Expert Legal advice from Solicitors In Manchester And London on the modern slavery act
Modern slavery affects billions of people all over the world, including the UK. Every business has a responsibility to prevent exploitation happening in your business and in any part of your supply chain. Some businesses will be required to submit transparency statements to report on anti-slavery and anti-human trafficking efforts.
Modern Slavery Act 2015 aims to combat slavery and human trafficking. It is mandatory for certain businesses to comply with the act in their operations and their supply chain. Eligible businesses must report a transparency statement on an annual basis, which publishes the actions taken by a business to prevent slavery and human trafficking.
What businesses are affected by the Modern Slavery Act?
The reporting requirements of the Modern Slavery Act applies to any company that supplies goods or services in the UK with a turnover of at least £36 million. The turnover includes all subsidiaries that do business in the UK.
For smaller business there is no legal requirement to report but it is encouraged. A small business may also be indirectly affected by reporting obligations if they are in the supply chain of a large company. You may be required to report your modern slavery efforts to the large company as part of their monitoring and transparency efforts.
Additionally, for small businesses looking to do business with certain organisations, transparency reporting may be required as part of the tender or bidding process.
What is a Transparency Statement and what should it include?
Transparency Statements must be supplied by businesses with a certain turnover who supply goods or services in the UK. They are design as an attempt to tackle the issue of modern slavery and human trafficking. The aim is to make businesses more responsible for human trafficking in their business and in their wider supply line.
In short, the Transparency Statement should include statements of the businesses policies for preventing slavery and human trafficking in their supply line.
Some of the information to include in your transparency statement includes:
- Business structure and supply chain
- Policies for preventing human trafficking
- Most at risks areas in your supply chain
- Steps taken to assess and manage risk
- Staff training and awareness
The transparency statement can be viewed by the public. Therefore, it is in the best interests of the business to comply with the Modern Slavery Act to preserve the reputation and public relations of the business.
How can you maintain compliance with the Modern Slavery Act?
Non-compliance of the Modern Slavery Act can result in critical consequences such as fines and/or imprisonment, and compensation pay out to alleged victims.
The steps you can take to ensure your business complies with the act include:
- Undertake routine review and risk assessments for potential slavery or human trafficking in the business and your supply chain or partners
- Include anti-slavery and human trafficking clauses in supplier contracts
- Conduct training for employees about the Modern Slavery Act
- Install policies and procedures to combat anti-slavery and human trafficking
How can Monarch Solicitors help?
At Monarch Solicitors, we can help your business comply with the Modern Slavery Act by drafting your transparency statement. If you are under investigation, we can represent and help you defend allegations of slavery throughout each stage of the investigation.
Our specialist employment solicitors have decades of experience dealing with employment issues. They are well equipped to deal with a whole manner of different cases no matter how big or small.
Our team have had great success negotiating settlement offers, taking claims to the Employment Tribunal, and many more. Every person we represent receives the same high quality of treatment and personal service.
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A business that supplies goods and services need to abide by the Modern Slavery Act by having a Transparency Statement in place.
If you do not have a Transparency Statement in place then this may result in having a negative impact on your brand image as this information is available to the public. Furthermore, The Secretary of State may seek an injunction through the Courts to enforce you to publish a Transparency Statement, to which you would face a fine if you were found to be in contempt of court.
The Transparency Statement is a document outlining the steps and procedures in place to tackle slavery and human trafficking in the business’ daily operations and supply chain. A Transparency Statement may include:
- Your organisation structure and supply chains
- The policies and strategies in place to avoid slavery and human trafficking
- Identify areas in the business that are prone to slavery and human trafficking
- The procurement process of your suppliers
- Your suppliers code of conduct
- A risk assessment of slavery and human trafficking of your suppliers
- The effectiveness of its current strategy and measures in place
- Staff Training to make staff aware and be able to identify possible slavery and human trafficking
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