Here’s why May’s campaign against slavery is a contradiction

Theresa May has launched a campaign against slavery, without acknowledging that her government actively supports other forms of bondage [Image: AFP].

Theresa May has launched a campaign against slavery, without acknowledging that her government actively supports other forms of bondage [Image: AFP].

The launch of Theresa May’s campaign against modern slavery is laudable – until you realise there is one form of slavery she actively promotes.

You might say that wage slavery does not involve anything like the kind of abuse that is associated with the other forced workers – but you’d probably be wrong.

As Mrs May said herself, “People are enduring experiences that are simply horrifying in their inhumanity” – and that goes for people who are forced to seek paid work of the most demeaning kinds, simply to make ends meet.

Employers will force pay and conditions down, exploit their workers brutally, inflict psychological torture on them, just to keep them docile. This Writer has seen it – perhaps you have too.

That’s just fine by Theresa May.

Look at today’s (July 31) report about student debt – released concurrently with the launch of Mrs May’s campaign.

It says, “Having to pay back student debts will wipe out any graduate premium for most professions, claims the Intergenerational Foundation in a report.”

Meanwhile the government is still telling us higher education boosts employability and earnings.

So the cream of UK academia is lured into huge debts that will hang over them for most, if not all, of their working life.

Meanwhile the rest of us – those who can find work in the first place – are already under the cosh because employers know their only restriction is the ‘National Living Wage’ – which doesn’t pay enough for anyone to survive without benefits.

And the benefit system is deliberately skewed to withhold payments from claimants.

That’s just fine by Theresa May.

Look at Mandatory Work Activity. The DWP has been forced to reveal the names of employers taking part in this form of modern slavery (although it has restricted the details to those that were part of the scheme when a Freedom of Information request was made in 2012). Ministers had spent four years fighting court battles to assure anonymity to their accomplices because they knew the British public would be horrified.

Mandatory Work Activity takes people who have lost their jobs and sends them back to work – in some cases, doing exactly the same job – with their salary replaced by rock-bottom state benefits.

That’s just fine by Theresa May.

Don’t get me wrong – modern slavery is evil; it should be wiped off of British shores.

But the campaign simply exposes Conservative double-standards that allow a different kind of slavery because it has a different name.

And that’s just fine by Theresa May.

Britain will lead the fight against modern slavery, Theresa May has said, vowing to make it her mission to help rid the world of the “barbaric evil”.

The most recent Home Office estimates suggest there are between 10,000 and 13,000 victims of modern slavery in the UK, with 45 million estimated victims across the world.

Victims are said to include women forced into prostitution, “imprisoned” domestic staff and workers in fields, factories and fishing boats.

Source: Modern slavery: Theresa May vows to defeat ‘evil’ – BBC News


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5 thoughts on “Here’s why May’s campaign against slavery is a contradiction

  1. Elspeth Parris

    ‘Immigrant’ domestic staff terrified of leaving abusive positions because their permission to reside is limited to that particular employment. Haven’t I seen stories in the past of MPs using such ‘staff’? Doesn’t that limit to the ‘permission to reside’ create a potential for a form of slavery?

  2. Justin

    same old stuff from the conservatives,it does not matter what they do slavery is always one of there beliefs, right the way from YTS through to anything they do currently, backed up by experts from the atos, maximus and capita consortium who use physiotherapists to carry out a mental health assessments and when you check the person’s area of specailisation it is sports physiotherapy, no wonder they make so many mistakes and what happens on the outcome of this, well you have to do a mandatory reconsideration and if there is no agreement then, it is of to tribunal and should you dare to ask for details about the person that assessed you qualifications you meet the wonderfull wall of freedom of information and we have to protect the person own rights, so what does that mean in english, well i interpret this as i am carrying out a medical examination on you and i have done five weeks training at atos and that is better than your gp and after that you are fit for work, your own gp’s nine years training is irrelavant, i am the expert and if you dare to ask for us to provide a recording of the medical how dare you,can’t you trust us, after all we not done a bad job, we got thousand’s of the system, that excellent, does not matter that some of the people we helped with our expert opinion later self harmed,we were right in the first place and we will carry on being right, in fact if this so called experts were so brilliant perhaps there needs to be a understanding as to why there training system that is creating these experts is not being rolled out under a nhs framework,no wonder pretti patel and all her merry crowd were against eu, how dare they have the eu courts of human rights telling us we can’t invoke slavery, after all 2 pounds a hour is excellent wages , it might be in some countries, here it would be luck to get you a bus trip, that’s if you can find one to get you there within a 90 minute timescale.
    there record is atrocious, there record will always be atrocious and the day of reckoning is coming when people stop spending, start tightening there belts and in particular look at companies that benefit the tories and stop spending on them altogether,it is time tory boy learnt, but the truth of the matter is tory boy never will, until it is to late and when they reach the point of being to late and they might ask ordinary person to help,keep knocking i wont be listening

    1. Jeffrey Davies

      oh justin you forgot that part of very highly trained are they at those companies who do the governments work for them we at said company dont stop your benefits ouch their marking down will stop benefits has we now the dm will apply whot said companys wrote oh yes but most of all are those in the wrag some will get sanctioned some will give up the ghost and some will be put on those charitys books who take a slave yes its good to be under the yoke

  3. Brian

    May is missing the point here, as most Tories do! we are all slaves to the modern world, the option of growing vegetables is not realistic. If those that have, do not support those that need, then that is modern slavery in all it’s forms. There is no one human on this planet that has a right to life anymore than another, but put human avarice into the equation and a balance of equity is required. May, to my knowledge has never experienced anything other than privilege, albeit relative. This is why we need politics to include those with experience of poverty to ensure the avarice of the arrogant is suppressed. These arrogant politicians are the self serving elite that stalk the corridors of Whitehall calculating their cut of everyone else’s income. Corbyn is a representative that threatens the present injustice and the elite, of course know this, they will cling onto power by whatever means, they see it as a constant threat of peasant revolt, throwing the odd carrot to quell the masses. Time for change, the sort of ‘change’ foisted on the poor in the name of progress, efficiency, economy etc. May’s platitude’s fool only fools, as do the blue knickers in the labour party. This could be the peasant spring in the making.

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