Tag Archives: Australian Modern Slavery Act

Modern Slavery Act – What Are You Doing About It?

Following the anticipated enactment of the Commonwealth of Australia’s Modern Slavery Act and in light of the enactment of the New South Wales Government’s Modern Slavery Act 2018, legislation is already a reality for companies operating in NSW.  Global GreenTag International CEO and Program Director David Baggs says: “the torch light has already been turned on – and it’s really time to do something about understanding the Act and its expectations, fully.”

David is to take a platform later this month in Sydney by invitation from leaders of the Design Futures Council  (DFC) and DesignIntelligence Australia to help bring the realities of the Act forward at a public function.  The event on August 21st  – Sustainable Supply Chains – Fighting Modern Slavery will deal directly with what Modern Slavery legislation means for the business community and especially the built environment sector that is the dominant dealer in the global supply chain.

David will join lead speaker Scott Alden, Partner and procurement expert with law firm Holding Redlich, Sally Irwin, Managing Director of The Freedom Hub and Alexia Lidas, Managing Director of the Design Futures Council and a board member of the Australian Smart Communities Association (ASCA) to examine the modernisation of the supply chain, covering:

  • What modern slavery is
  • Modern Slavery in Australia – it exists
  • An overview of the legislation
  • Predictions on the implications for future contracting
  • What material and products have had modern slavery traced in the supply chain?
  • How to get verified?

As an early responder to the Modern Slavery Act – Global GreenTag was one of the core group of companies that pledged support behind the Australian Human Rights Commission’s call for Modern Slavery legislation in late 2017.  The company moved quickly to bring the successful Ethical Labour Sourcing tool designed by BRE in the UK to develop a new company assessment tool for Australia that will serve all kinds of businesses to help eliminate possibilities of trafficking or slavery in product supply chains and aid tracking and reporting.

“It is already something Global GreenTag has done at a product level – but now we can support companies, verifiers and the industry in general to engage with the new legislation in as cost efficient a manner possible,” says David.

Alexia Lidas from DFC says “an out of sight, out of mind mentality to the legislation is no longer an option … we have a moral obligation to ensure we are not unconsciously supporting modern slavery.” Plus, she adds, companies need to do a closer reading of the legislation because it won’t only be targeting companies making $50 million plus revenue to provide Modern Slavery Statements, this is a misconception.

“The legislation has been designed so that the mandated formal reporting is undertaken by entities that can carry the burden of additional admin, and are assumedly procuring larger amounts, making them the best focus area. However, they can be penalised for the activity of firms within their supply chain- meaning that although their immediate practices could be squeaky clean, if they have purchased from a firm which has modern slavery in their supply chain- they can be penalised. This domino effect means that each firm has a part to play in ensuring that the supply chain is free of modern slavery – irrespective of their turn-over.”

Procurement expert, Scott Alden, Partner at Holding Redlich also predicts how this might play out in future contracts, adding:

“This will become an increasingly common feature of commercial contracts requiring parties to monitor and address risks of modern slavery in their supply chains.  With penalties of over $1 million dollars for non-compliance with these new laws, we can expect to see specific indemnities where one party causes another to suffer a fine in relation to its Modern Slavery Statement”.

Global GreenTag’s development of the BRE Ethical Labour Sourcing (ELS) Standard will enable Australian companies to engage more confidently with the Modern Slavery legislation, using the Standard to self-assess or to submit to a more robust level using a third party verification process, which GreenTag will assess to provide assurance of their responsible and ethical business practices and provide a maturity pathway for continuous improvement.

The Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard specifies the requirements for organisational management to demonstrate an on-going commitment to the principles of ethical labour sourcing as part of a holistic framework. The framework comprises criteria for evaluating the maturity of the performance of the organisation under twelve issues. The overall verification is not based on an aggregation of the levels of maturity in these issues, but is based on a commitment to improve through an agreed set of objectives.

If you would like to attend this event and find out more, please register HERE

 

Sustainable Supply Chains -Fighting Modern Slavery

DATE:

Tue. 21 August 2018

TIME:

6:00 pm – 8:30 pm AEST

LOCATION

Holding Redlich, 65/19 Martin Place, Sydney, NSW 2000

 

The Design Futures Council (DFC) is a DesignIntelligence gathering of development, architecture, design, engineering, construction, product, and technology leaders who explore global trends, challenges, and opportunities to advance innovation and shape the future of architecture, engineering, construction (A/E/C) and design. Each year the DFC convenes summits on issues of strategic importance to leaders: technology and applied innovation, collaboration, education and talent, sustainability, and the business of design.

The DFC is committed to supporting the A/E/C community by providing information and understanding of trends and future issues. The Council creates context in which leaders from member firms can work with one another—as well as leading thinkers from outside industries—to tackle complex challenges and opportunities in A/E/C.

 

Website

https://designfuturescouncil.com/

Global GreenTag International Partners with BRE to roll out Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard for Australia

Global GreenTag International is moving quickly to help activate Australia’s first ever Modern Slavery Act with the development of a new company assessment tool for Australia that will help to eliminate possibilities of trafficking or slavery in product supply chains and aid tracking and reporting.

In partnership with BRE, the UK based, international, multi-disciplinary building science centre, Global GreenTag International is developing a localised version of BRE’s pioneering Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard (ELS) and associated product assessment process – ahead of the anticipated enactment of the Commonwealth of Australia’s Modern Slavery Act and in light of the enactment of the New South Wales Government’s Modern Slavery Act 2018.

David Baggs, CEO and Program Director for Global GreenTag said, “Global GreenTag is partnering with BRE to bring a mature ELS tool to Australia at a time when Modern Slavery legislation has been enacted in NSW and is likely to be introduced federally later this year or next year. We have been engaging with BRE from the time that we formally supported the Australian Human Rights Commission’s call for Modern Slavery legislation in late 2017. It is already something Global GreenTag does at a product level and we want to be able to support companies, verifiers and the industry in general to engage with the new legislation in as cost efficient a manner possible. This collaboration will certainly do that.”

Nigel Jones, Team Leader – Sustainable Products at BRE said “The Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard for Australia will enable any organisation to demonstrate to customers, partners and other stakeholders, their commitment to eliminating any possibility of trafficking or slavery in their supply chain. It will enable companies to go beyond compliance with the outlined reporting requirements of the Modern Slavery Bill 2018 which was introduced to the Australian Parliament at the end of June”.

The Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard has been created to recognise those who wish to seek third party assurance of their responsible and ethical business practices and provide a maturity pathway for continuous improvement.

The Standard specifies the requirements for organisational management to demonstrate an on-going commitment to the principles of ethical labour sourcing as part of a holistic framework. The framework comprises criteria for evaluating the maturity of the performance of the organisation under twelve issues. The overall verification is not based on an aggregation of the levels of maturity in these issues, but is based on a commitment to improve through an agreed set of objectives.

Participation in the standard can be achieved through self-assessment or to a more robust level using third party verification through the easy-to-use online ELS platform.

David Baggs (left) signs agreements with Shamir Ghumra, Director of BREEAM and Sustainable Products at BRE in the UK last month – to develop the Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard (ELS) for Australia and for the Licence to enable BRE to deliver the Global GreenTag Product Health Declaration™ or GreenTag PhD™ program for construction products in the UK and Western Europe.

 

Global GreenTag International Pty Ltd is an internationally recognised, multi-award-winning Type 1 (Third Party) Ecolabelling, Product Certification, Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) and Product health Declaration (PhD) program operator based in Australia, but with offices and representation also in South Africa, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan and Malaysia. Global GreenTag programs are formally recognised in WELL™, BREEAM International, EarthCheck®, Green Star®, LOTUS® and the Malaysian Government’s MyHIJAU program and compliant with credit requirements in LEED® (PhDs and EPDs), and BREEAM® (EPDs).

For further information, about Global GreenTag, or to organise an interview with David Baggs, please contact Debra Robertson by email: marketing@globalgreentag.com or by phone: 1300 263 586 or mobile: 0412 589 588

www.globalgreentag.com  www.globalgreentag.co.za www.globalgreentag.cn

BRE Building a better world together is an international, multi-disciplinary, building science centre with a mission to improve buildings through research and knowledge generation. We are owned by a charity called the BRE Trust, which is the largest single funder of education and research for the built environment. We use our cutting edge collaborative research to develop a range of digital products, services, standards and qualifications that are adopted around the world to bring about positive change in the built environment. www.bregroup.com

For further information about BRE, please contact Linda McKeown email linda.mckeown@bre.co.uk

www.bre.co.uk

Australian Modern Slavery Act – Global GreenTag Pledges Support

171115_Mod_Slavery_Support_Declaration

A coalition of organisations, including Global GreenTag, has released a Statement of Support for the development of legislation to combat Modern Slavery.

According to the Global Slavery Index, modern slavery is a significant global human rights issue with an estimated 40 million people living in some form of modern slavery around the world, including human trafficking, servitude, child labour, sex trafficking, forced labour and debt bondage.

Australia is not immune with an estimated 4,300 people living under modern slavery conditions.

The Australian Government, through a joint-standing committee is investigating legislation to combat Modern Slavery with the intention of introducing legislation that will make it a requirement for large companies to investigate and report on modern slavery in their operations and supply chains.

It is an important initiative that every company should get behind, says David Baggs, CEO of Global GreenTag.

“We have vested ethical interest as a highly transparent, product certification label. Just as we are driven to protect and preserve the environment and earth’s natural systems and resources, Global GreenTag is also committed as part of its certification standard to assess protection policies and measures for the protection of people who both work with or who are affected by manufacturing processes and all along the product supply chain. We are very pleased to support for the establishment of a Modern Slavery Act in Australia.”

Edward Santow, the Human Rights Commissioner says the Statement of Support is intended to assist the reform processes and provide guiding principles; including transparency, accountability, victim support and leadership. He says:

“This Statement is significant because it brings together a diverse group of leaders from the Australian business community, civil society, the religious community and academia.

“As leaders, we support a unified approach in addressing modern slavery. This is the only way that real change can take place.”

The Statement of Support was released at the end of October and says a Modern Slavery Act should be aligned with and reinforce the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

It says clear guidance and support should be provided for organisations that find modern slavery in their operations or supply chains. It says there should be access to appropriate information, remedies and support for victims.

The Signatories of the Statement of Support for an Australian Modern Slavery Act are:

Anti-Slavery Australia UTS
Ausbil
Australian Catholic Religious Against Trafficking in Humans
Australian Human Rights Commission
Business and Human Rights Resource Centre
Global Green Tag
Green Building Council Australia
Supply Chain Sustainability School
Uniting Church in Australia – Synod of Victoria & Tasmania
The Freedom Partnership
UNSW Law & Australian Human Rights Institute
WEstjustice

For More information, Download

2017 Statement of Support for Australian Modern Slavery Act

2017 Statement of Support for an Australian Modern Slavery Act