On 11th March 2021, the UK Government launched a Modern Slavery Statement Registry as an online platform for organizations adhering to the Modern Slavery act 2015 section 54 to upload their report. This registry will enhance accessibility and comparability, providing one searchable, centralized location.
At present, commercial UK organisations with an annual turnover of £36m or above are required to produce a yearly modern slavery statement, detailing the measures which they have taken to fight and eradicate modern slavery both internally and within their supply chains.
The registry intends to strengthen supply chain transparency covered by the Modern Slavery Act and enable stakeholders to effectively monitor reports and compliance with the reporting obligations. Organisations are strongly encouraged to submit their most recent modern slavery statement to the registry, demonstrating their activity.
The creation of the registry follows the Transparency in Supply Chains Consultation, conducted by the Government as part of ongoing efforts to bolster the reporting requirements of the Modern Slavery Act. The UK government is certainly taking a proactive approach in this area, having released, in March 2020, the world’s first Government Modern Slavery Statement in an attempt to lead global provision efforts to combat Modern Slavery in both the public and private sectors.
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson quoted “As a government, we don’t have to produce this statement. But we want to. Because the brutal truth is that modern slavery will endure only as long as it is profitable for the criminals – and it will only remain profitable as long as businesses and governments are prepared to look the other way”
Certainly, the registry provides newfound levels of impetus for those companies to improve their reporting standards. Consumers, investors, and civil society will now have greater abilities to assess organizational activity on the issue, leaving less room for those inactive organizations to manoeuvre.
Quality reporting, auditing the supply chain, and a deep understanding of modern slavery footprints on behalf of reporting companies will be especially important, and praiseworthy as this area of legislation continues to develop and evolve.
If you would like more information, contact ethiXbase to find out how our questionnaires and analytics dashboards can help you to improve your modern-day slavery report and assess risk within your supply chain.