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Modern slavery reporting requirements Mandatory Criteria 4

Businesses with an annual consolidated revenue of over $100 million must submit a Modern Slavery Statement outlining the risks of modern slavery in their supply chain within six months of the end of their reporting period (whether that be a financial or calendar year).

In this article

  • Seven mandatory criteria for an MSS
  • What does due diligence mean?
  • What does remediation mean?

Seven mandatory criteria for an MSS

There are seven mandatory criteria for a Modern Slavery Statement (MSS). The information below relates to  Criteria 4, which requires a business to describe what actions the business is taking to assess and address the risks of modern slavery practices occurring in its operations and supply chains.

You must also report on the actions taken by any other businesses that you own or control and should only cover the actions taken during the 12-month reporting period.

The description of the actions taken must include information about due diligence and remediation processes that your business undertakes.

What does due diligence mean?

Due diligence is the ongoing management processes to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for how your business addresses actual and potential modern slavery risks.
There are four parts to due diligence:

  1. Identifying and assessing potential modern slavery practices – for example
    • When engaging a new contractor or supplier, part of your contractor management process may involve asking questions to determine if the contractor displays any indicators of modern slavery risks
    • Engaging with contractors and suppliers to determine how they are addressing modern slavery risks
    • Asking contractors and suppliers to provide an undertaking as part of the contractual arrangements   or agree to a code of conduct in regard to  the risk of modern slavery 
  2. Integrating your findings across your business and take appropriate action to address impacts – for example:
    • Undertake training with your procurement team so they understand modern slavery and what needs to be done if it is suspected in the supply chain
    • Introducing new grievance/whistleblowing policies for your employees and contractors to report any potential risks or concerns about colleagues or supply chain issues
  3. Tracking your business’s performance to check whether impacts are being addressed – for example:
    • Regularly carrying out an internal audit of supplier/contractor screening processes
    • Regularly reviewing internal policies and carrying out appropriate training and refresher training
    • Increasing engagement with suppliers
  4. Publicly communicating what is being done – for example:
    • Publishing your MSS on your website
    • Publicly reporting on any actions the business takes to combat modern slavery.

What does remediation mean?

Businesses that identify that they have caused or contributed to modern slavery must provide for, or cooperate in, the remediation of its impact. This means you should try to ‘make good’ the adverse impact by restoring the victim to the situation they would have be in if the adverse impact had not occurred.

Remediation can take many forms and doesn’t necessarily need to just focus on modern slavery – for example:

  • Taking steps to ensure the harm cannot reoccur
  • Issuing a public apology
  • Offering compensation 
  • Setting up a dispute resolution process, and/or 
  • Stopping certain activities.

If your business did not directly cause or contribute to the harm, but is linked to a business which caused adverse impacts, while not responsible for remediation, it is recommended you work with the business that caused the harm to minimise the impact and prevent reoccurrence. If this is unsuccessful you may wish to cease any further business interaction with such a business.

Effective remediation processes can help you identify issues before they escalate, better manage risks, reinforce your culture, improve morale and wellbeing and strengthen your entity’s reputation.

For further information, view the ‘Guidance for Reporting entities’ published by the Department of Home Affairs.

This information is part of a series on modern slavery reporting requirements aimed at assisting members understand the requirements. See the related documents contained in the ‘What to read next’ section for more information. 

To find out more, contact HIA's Workplace Services team

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