The National Referral Mechanism (NRM) is a framework for identifying and recording victims of human trafficking or modern slavery and for ensuring they receive the appropriate support. This video will explain the NRM and when and how potential victims should be referred. Only organisations defined as NRM First Responders are authorised to make referrals. A Home Office First Responder Training package is available via this website in the "Training" section 

A referral to the NRM by the police means a person is suspected or believed to be a potential victim of modern slavery or human trafficking and that some of the first steps needed to safeguard victims are being put in place.

The NRM does not itself result in modern slavery investigation but seeks to support the victim. Investigation is the role of the police.

The support services available to victims through the NRM process include:

  • Safe accommodation and material assistance
  • Medical treatment and care
  • Counselling and emotional support
  • Advice on immigration and legal rights and services
  • Advice on the criminal justice system
  • Guidance on education, training, and employment
  • A minimum 45-day ‘reflection period' when a person cannot be removed from the UK. The recovery period is intended to give the victim time to recover and escape the influence of traffickers and/or to take an informed decision on cooperating with the authorities
  • Ensuring any necessary return to the home country is safe and dignified

Full details regarding the NRM including which agencies and organisations can make a referral and how to do so can be found on the Home Office NRM Website. 

The Salvation Army

The Salvation Army is contracted to provide support across the UK for the victims of modern slavery who enter the NRM process. They will provided accommodation as well as other support services such as counselling, therapy and access to legal and other support services where it has been decided there are reasonable grounds to suspect they are victims of modern slavery, this will be within 5 days of being referred.

The Salvation Army may be also able to assist if there are immediate accommodation requirements. More detail can be found on the Salvation Army website

If the Salvation Army cannot help, immediate accommodation should be arranged through local authority 24/7 safeguarding teams.

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About Us


This is the website of the NPCC Modern Slavery and Organised Immigration Crime (MSOIC) Unit.  We work to support police officers, police staff and law enforcement partners to lead the fight against modern slavery,  human trafficking and OIC. 

Our aim is to help to deliver a consistent response to protecting victims and targeting offenders - and to work with partners to ultimately help prevent exploitation from having a place in our society.

Contact Us


You can contact the NPCC Modern Slavery and Organised Immigration Crime Unit by email at Modern Slavery

Alternatively colleagues in UK law enforcement can join the Policing Slavery and Human Trafficking Group on Knowledge Hub.

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