When Did Addressing Modern Slavery Become a Business-critical Issue?

If your annual turnover is > £ 36M in the UK compliance with the UK Modern Slavery Act is required.  In fact, since the enactment of the UK Modern Slavery Act in 2015, modern slavery is perceived as being more widespread.  So consider this:

  • 86% of companies recognise the abhorrent nature of modern slavery and do not want their company to be associated in anyway with these illegal practices.
  • 77% of companies reported the likelihood of modern slavery occurring in their supply chain, with 97% of companies citing reputational risk as the biggest driver for action on modern slavery.
  • 85% of companies are experiencing a greater level of interest on responsible sourcing issues.
  • 25% of companies see investors as a strong driver for addressing modern slavery.
  • 58% of companies have increased communication of expectations on actions to address modern slavery to their suppliers
  • 77% of companies have increased communication with third-party audit firms.
  • 50% of companies are collaborating more with peers, non-governmental agencies, and multi-stakeholder initiatives and are seeking more external advice and expertise.

In a time poor world, companies face numerous barriers and challenges in addressing modern slavery, the least of which being insufficient resources to conduct due diligence and support supply chain improvements.   Senior leadership engagement is crucial in educating and driving effective responses, as is collaboration and partnerships that provide advice and support.