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Modern slavery reporting performance of UK govt.'s top suppliers still low according to updated research

Author: Kieran Guilbert, Thomson Reuters Foundation, Published on: 21 May 2019

'UK urged to 'lead by example' on slavery as top state suppliers flout law' 20 May 2019

Britain is failing to lead by example in efforts to stop modern slavery as nearly a third of the government’s top suppliers are flouting a landmark anti-slavery law...

About 29 of the nation’s 100 biggest suppliers last year did not meet a legal requirement to outline the steps they had taken to combat the risk of forced labor within their supply chains, showed research by business consultancies Sancroft and Tussell.

Four of the suppliers... did not produce a statement, while others such as Microsoft did not feature it correctly on their websites or failed to have the document signed by directors...

Britain’s new independent anti-slavery commissioner Sara Thornton said the law should be widened to also cover the public sector...

The number of compliant companies rose to 71 last year from 53 in 2017 yet the tally remains low...

Airbus, accountancy firm Ernst & Young (EY) and Microsoft were among the non-compliant companies having failed to link to a statement on their website homepages, the research found.

Yet Airbus and EY said they complied with the law after being informed of their omissions, according to Sancroft and Tussell. Microsoft did not respond to a request for comment...

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Related companies: Airbus EY (Ernst & Young) Microsoft