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Many companies in high-risk sectors aren’t addressing slavery risks in UK Modern Slavery Act statements, report says

The report published by CORE Coalition provides an overview of how companies are including information in their Slavery and Human Trafficking Statements on the risks of modern slavery in their supply chains and operations. It focuses on 50 companies covered by the UK Modern Slavery Act, in sectors associated with a heightened risk of modern slavery.

Following the publication of the report, CORE Coalition received a response from Hilton about their assessment of their statement and their associated docs concerning labour risks. Hilton's letter, as well as CORE Coalition's response to the letter, are included below.

[refers to Airbnb, Aldi, Barratt, Bellway, Berkeley, Bettys & Taylors, Boots, Bovis, Cartier, Colgate Palmolive, Dior, Estée Lauder, Ferrero, Foot Locker, Fortnum & Mason, G4S, Goldsmiths, Hershey, Hilton, Hyatt, InterContinental, Interserve, Kellogg, L'Oréal, Lidl, Lindt & Sprüngli, Marriott, Mars, Matalan, Mitie, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Pandora, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt Benckiser, Revlon, Serco, Signet, Sodexo, Sports Direct, Tetley, Tiffany, Typhoo, Unilever, Unite Students, Arsenal FC, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC, Manchester City FC, and Manchester United FC]

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Company response
26 October 2017

Hilton responds to report on company statements published in compliance with the UK Modern Slavery Act

Author: Hilton

"Re: Report on company statements published in compliance with the UK Modern Slavery Act", 13 October 2017

We appreciate CORE’s focus on modern slavery. This is an important topic that Hilton and others in the travel industry seek to address through policy and practice. At Hilton, we are committed to transparency and integrity, including in our human rights practices and efforts to combat modern slavery. Our commitments and progress are clearly outlined in our Code of Conduct, Human Rights Policy Statement, Responsible Sourcing Policy, and reported on in our MSA Statement (2017) and Corporate Responsibility Report (2017)...

We are concerned that CORE’s analysis of Hilton’s commitments, policies, transparency and progress is incomplete and potentially misleading. Specifically:

  1. Incomplete scope of document review.  [...]

  2. Inaccurate reference to annual report.  [...]

  3. Misleading analysis of the 10-K form. [...]

  4. Overlooked commitment to labour rights. [...]

  5. Overlooked structure and identified key risks in the supply chain.  [...]

We have provided additional supporting information for these points...

Read the full post here

Item
25 October 2017

CORE's response to Hilton

Author: CORE

Thank you for your letter on 13 October in relation to CORE’s recent report on company statements published in compliance with the Modern Slavery Act 2015.

Hilton’s commitments to transparency and integrity are welcome. I address below the points in your letter.

1) Incomplete document review

In the Methodology section on page 12 of our report we acknowledge that our document reviews may be incomplete [...]

4) Overlooked commitment to labour rights 

The MSA statement does not mention labour rights. There is no link to the Code of Conduct in the MSA statement. Links in the MSA statement to other documents are not functioning. [...]

5) Overlooked structure and identified key risks in the supply chain. 

In our report, we note that Hilton's MSA statement says that 'The supply chain consists of suppliers who sell goods and services to the hotels' and that no specific details are provided. For civil society organisations including CORE and our partners, a comprehensive, relevant statement should include the following information...

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Article
4 October 2017

Many companies in high-risk sectors aren’t addressing slavery risks in UK Modern Slavery Act statements, report says

Author: CORE (UK)

This report aims to provide a snapshot of if and how [50] companies are including information in their Slavery and Human Trafficking Statements on the risks of modern slavery in their supply chains and operations. [It focuses] on companies sourcing raw materials associated with a heightened risk of modern slavery - cocoa from West Africa, mined gold, mica from India, palm oil from Indonesia, and tea from Assam - and companies operating in sectors that are widely recognised as being at heightened risk: garment production; hotels and accommodation; construction; football clubs (which due to the nature of their businesses include a wide range of functions including hospitality and retailing manufactured goods); and outsourcing companies....

While [the report] found that several companies are beginning to integrate their approach to addressing the risks of slavery and human trafficking in the context of wider human rights and labour rights risks, few are making the link to risks that can be generated by their own business models...

[refers to Airbnb, Aldi, Barratt, Bellway, Berkeley, Bettys & Taylors, Boots, Bovis, Cartier, Colgate Palmolive, Dior, Estée Lauder, Ferrero, Foot Locker, Fortnum & Mason, G4S, Goldsmiths, Hershey, Hilton, Hyatt, InterContinental, Interserve, Kellogg, L'Oréal, Lidl, Lindt & Sprüngli, Marriott, Mars, Matalan, Mitie, Mondelēz, Nestlé, Pandora, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt Benckiser, Revlon, Serco, Signet, Sodexo, Sports Direct, Tetley, Tiffany, Typhoo, Unilever, Unite Students, Arsenal FC, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC, Manchester City FC, and Manchester United FC]

Read the full post here