While this used to be sufficient, countries around the world are starting to hold large companies accountable for labor conditions not just in their own business but also for the conditions in their supply chains. For companies in manufacturing, this means being able to affirmatively say that your suppliers of raw materials, parts, and equipment are not using any forced labor.
It’s one thing to walk down to your own factory floor and be able to certify it, but it’s an entirely different matter to know about the conditions of your supplier on another continent. How can you comply with legal requirements mandating you report on conditions in your supply chain, while also being able to honestly say that you know forced labor is not occurring?
This article serves as a best practices guide for manufacturing companies looking to unshackle themselves from the chains of modern slavery.
What Is Modern Slavery?
The first question any manufacturing company needs to ask is if they even know what constitutes human trafficking in today’s world. While “modern slavery” includes traditional notions of slavery like forced labor and human trafficking, it also can include the removal of laborer passports, exorbitant recruiting fees for third-party contractors, refusal to allow laborers to leave, lack of a written contract, and lack of labor documents in the employee’s native language. The prevalence of modern slavery in your supply chain is a matter of degree.
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