"Forced Labor in Corporate Supply Chains: A Powerful Role for Benchmarking"
...A report released this week by KnowtheChain, in which the Business and Human Rights Resource Center is a partner, assesses 20 companies’ policies and practices on supply chain forced labor. The report provides a “transparency snapshot” across three industries: food and beverage, apparel and footwear, and information and communications technology (ICT).
It found that 17 of the 20 have a formal corporate policy on supply chain forced labor and trafficking, demonstrating that they recognize the importance of the issue. However, only five provide evidence of how those policies are made available to vulnerable parties including workers, and only three conduct interviews with subcontracted personnel.
Most of the companies have a grievance mechanism at company level, yet only a third require their suppliers to do so. And there is a long way to go on supply chain transparency, with 4 of the 20 companies disclosing the names and locations of their first-tier suppliers.
Building on this pilot report, in 2016 KnowtheChain will benchmark companies, by sector, on their efforts to exclude forced labor from their supply chains. Companies will be compared in areas such as supply chain traceability, business relationships, recruitment practices, worker communication, monitoring, grievance procedures and remedy...