Children: Employment

Home Office written question – answered on 20th October 2014.

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Photo of Stephen McPartland Stephen McPartland Conservative, Stevenage

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps she is taking to compel multi-national companies to take steps to prevent child slavery in their supply chains.

Photo of Karen Bradley Karen Bradley The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department

We are working proactively with business to prevent modern slavery in supply chains. The Modern Slavery Bill will now include a measure requiring companies to disclose what they have done to ensure their supply chains are slavery free, including steps to prevent child slavery. The move is aimed at large businesses and will apply regardless of the nature of the company or what it supplies, whether goods or services. We will consult to determine the appropriate size of business that will be affected to ensure that that the final provision is fair, workable and robust. We will also consult on, and develop statutory guidance to help businesses understand how they can comply with the disclosure requirement.

This transparency measure will help customers, investors and the general public to see what action major businesses are undertaking to secure a slavery-free supply chain. By requiring companies to disclose what they have done to ensure their supply chains are slavery free, the Government is seeking to harness consumer and shareholder pressure. We will continue to work with businesses to help them take practical action in this area.

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