Modern Slavery Update

 
 
The Government consulted on the Modern Slavery Act 2015 over the summer of 2020 and published its response on 22nd September 2020. The response sets out the government’s next steps to strengthen section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
 
So what might that mean?
 
In Annex D of the response, the government lays out the following commitments:
 
  • The Government will legislate to ensure the public sector is covered by the MSA
  • Statements will be required to be published on a Government run reporting database designed by the Home Office and currently in development.
  • They will set a single reporting deadline date, rather than it being linked to individual organisations year end
  • They will set up an Enforcement body and further consider enforcement methods
  • They will mandate key sections and approvals on future statements
  • They will retain the £36 million reporting threshold and focus on improving compliance at this threshold
 
The Home Office Modern Slavery Unit is setting up working group for UK public bodies and interested NGOs to inform and develop guidance and tools to support procurement staff and also provide feedback on proposals which may improve government policy and systems on modern slavery. Please contact [email protected] if you are interested in joining this group.
 
Further guidance and information should follow during 2021.