Under the Modern Slavery Act, commercial organisations who carry out business in the UK and have a total turnover of £36 million or more must prepare a slavery and human trafficking statement each financial year. This statement must set out the steps they’ve taken to ensure there is no modern slavery in their business, including in their supply chains.
The Government wants to improve these statements. It’s published updated guidance on the reporting requirements of section 54, including a more detailed explanation of what best practice looks like. Businesses should paint as clear a picture as they can of their practices, highlighting the steps they take in terms of risk analysis and due diligence exercises. Equally, employers should discuss the policies they have in place, and how these are effective in combatting modern slavery. For further detail on this, the Home Office guidance is available here.
The guidance now emphasises the fact that the statements will be assessed by third parties. Organisations who haven’t taken sufficient steps to combat slavery and human trafficking may be under pressure from third parties, such as investors, to rectify this.
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