Extending the reach of the Modern Slavery Act 2015
26 January 2017
The link between an increasingly globalised economy and the labour rights of workers was put firmly on the commercial agenda by the Government when it introduced the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (“MSA”) in October 2015.
The MSA introduced an obligation on commercial organisations with a turnover of £36 million or more to produce an annual statement setting out the steps taken to prevent modern slavery in their organisation and their supply chains.
In recent developments, the Modern Slavery (Transparency in Supply Chains) Bill 2016 (“Bill”) is currently making its way through Parliament. The Bill will extend the reach of the MSA so that public bodies will also be required to produce an annual statement (alongside commercial organisations). The Bill will also require commercial organisations and public bodies to include a statement in their annual reports and accounts and require public contracting authorities to exclude economic operators who have not provided a statement from procurement procedures.
The Bill is expected to have its second reading debate in the House of Commons on 24 March 2017. We will keep you updated on developments as the Bill progresses.
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