Malaysia: Social auditing firm Intertek failed to detect forced labour at Brightway glove factory, report alleges; state inspectors found workers in modern slavery conditions
In December 2020, Malaysia state labour inspectors raided latex glove maker Brightway Holdings near Kuala Lumpur, finding workers living in shipping containers under conditions so squalid that human resources minister likened them to “modern slavery.” According to a report by Reuters, inspections 19 months earlier of the same facilities by social auditing firm Intertek plc concluded that there was no forced labour, although the firm's reports detected violations of Malaysian labour laws. The Reuters report states that Intertek plc declined to comment on the Brightway audit but said that, "its audits meet stringent operational procedures with rigorous standards, and are themselves subject to regular and thorough independent audits. It did not say by whom." Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Intertek to provide a response to these allegations. The company did not respond.
In January 2021, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited responses from the buyer companies. Their responses can be accessed here.