Justice and Safety

Guest Blog on Human Trafficking

July 23, 2018 by No Comments

This week we welcome a guest blog from 17 year old college student Alice Somerville, who tells us about her time in the Scottish Government’s Human Trafficking team as part of a 4 week paid internship from Career Ready.

Career Ready is a UK wide charity linking employers with schools and colleges to open up the world of work to young people.

Alice talks us through what she learned about human trafficking and the impact her time with SG has had on her plans for the future.

I went to Deans Community High School in Livingston and left school at the end of 5th year because I wanted to go to college and study beauty therapy. I got into West Lothian College after a nerve-racking wait to study Level Six Beauty Care.

While I was in school I took part in the Career Ready Programme which is a UK wide charity that connects employers with young people who are in school or college. Career Ready offers employers to engage with students in their work place and give them another opportunity into the world of work through a four week paid Internship. It also helps young people gain an idea of what working life is about. However not only does it give you experience in the world of work , it works by helping students gain lifetime skills that are not only used in the work place but in day to day life.

Before I started working in the Government I knew human trafficking existed but I thought that it didn’t happen in Scotland, it only happened abroad. As my internship neared I became more informed of how much Human Trafficking is a problem in Scotland. I found out that Human Trafficking happens a lot closer to home finding out that some local businesses I know have trafficked workers!

After attending a few stakeholder meetings I became even more aware, I now know what signs to look out for and what type of industries tend to be involved in Human Trafficking such as car washes, nail bars and take away’ s.

My internship links into my Beauty Therapy course as this is an environment where Human Trafficking may happen and victims have been recovered. My internship has taught me the signs to look out for and who to contact if I have suspicions of Human Trafficking in nail bars.

In the Future I hope to complete my year at college and then come back to the Scottish Government as a Modern Apprentice as I have enjoyed my time here in the Government as an intern.

Alice Somerville.

In June earlier this year the then Cabinet Secretary for Justice Michael Matheson updated Parliament on progress in tackling human trafficking and exploitation in the past 12 months.

Read Mr Matheson’s full statement on the main Scottish Government website.

‘Trafficking and Exploitation: Strategy – First Annual Progress Report’ is available online.



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