Exploitation occurs when a person is groomed, forced or coerced into doing something that they don’t want to do for someone else’s gain. It is a complex and often hidden issue. People who are exploited can find themselves in situations where they experience abuse and violence, and they may be forced to take part in criminal activities.
Exploitation can happen anywhere. It takes place in urban and rural areas and affects people of all ages, genders and ethnicities.
Exploitation may be taking place even if someone seems to be making their own choices or the activity they are taking part in appears consensual – the person’s vulnerability and the situation’s exploitative nature can take away their freedom and capacity to make their own decisions. They may feel trapped and unable to escape their situation or tell others what is going on.
People involved in exploitative situations must always be considered victims and offered appropriate support.
- South Gloucestershire Trading Standards can be contacted through the Council’s Adult Social Care teams 01454 868007 or via the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 04 05 06, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm.
- Alternatively, you can report a scam to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via their website www.actionfraud.police.uk
- County Lines – criminal exploitation of children and vulnerable adults
- County Lines – Resources
- County Lines – Private security sector
- County Lines – Licensed taxi and private hire company staff
- County Lines – Bus and coach company staff
- County Lines – Train operating company staff
- County Lines – Private landlords and letting agents