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9 Feb 2021

G4S prospective bidders GardaWorld & Allied asked to set out plan to address labour abuse allegations; incl. co. response

UK security company G4S has repeatedly faced allegations of labour abuse among its migrant workforce. In January 2021, the Guardian raised specific allegations include that workers from south Asia and east Africa were forced to pay illegal recruitment fees to secure employment, making them vulnerable to modern slavery. These are not isolated concerns, in November 2019 the Norwegian sovereign wealth fund blacklisted shares in G4S due to the risk the company was contributing to “systemic human rights violations” in Qatar and UAE. More information can be found in the reports below.

G4S is currently facing rival takeover bids from two companies, Allied Universal and GardaWorld. In January 2020, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre contacted the two prospective bidders, Allied's financial backers Warburg Pincus and Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ), and GardaWorld's financial backer BC Partners, inviting them to respond to the serious concerns that have been raised over G4S’ treatment of migrant workers. We asked the companies to set out how they planned to address these serious and systemic alleged labour abuses and prevent them from occurring should their bid become successful.

Only GardaWorld provided a response (provided below); Allied Universal, BC Partners, Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) and Warburg Pincus did not respond. Comments from G4S are contained in the below reports.

Stories containing these allegations can be found on our website:

Company Responses

GardaWorld View Response
Allied Universal Security Services

No Response

Warburg Pincus

No Response

BC Partners LLP

No Response

Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ)

No Response