UK refusing asylum to more ex-child slaves despite safety fears (Thomson Reuters Foundation, Aug/14/2018)

Britain is refusing asylum to more former child slaves from nations such as Vietnam, Eritrea and Afghanistan, having denied refugee status to more than 275 non-European victims since 2012 despite fears many will fall back into the hands of traffickers. Between 2015 and 2017, the government denied asylum to 183 people trafficked or enslaved as children – double the total for the previous three years – Home Office (interior ministry) data obtained exclusively by the Thomson Reuters Foundation revealed. Many teenage survivors are then deported to nations where they have no relatives and end up prey once more to traffickers, according to charities that say the spike in asylum denials belies Britain’s vow to lead global efforts to end slavery. “It is incredibly shocking … that the situation is getting worse for young victims of trafficking,” said Catherine Baker, policy officer at the anti-child trafficking charity ECPAT UK.“They are being returned to countries where they have a high risk of being retrafficked,” she added. “If the government is serious about protecting child victims of human trafficking, it needs to ensure that they have long term stability and support.”