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The Salvation Army welcomes new measures to combat modern slavery

16 August 2017

The Salvation Army welcomes the Federal Government’s proposal to introduce new legislation requiring Australian businesses to report annually on steps taken to address slavery in their supply chains.

In Australia, there are more 4,300 people are currently enslaved. Through its national initiative to end modern slavery, The Salvation Army has been instrumental in mobilising community, business and government to realise their contributions to modern slavery and take action to eradicate it.

Jenny Stanger, National Manager of The Salvation Army’s Freedom Partnership to End Modern Slavery said: “Today’s announcement is significant because such legislation shifts the responsibility from victims who struggle to be visible to people that can help to a proactive approach by business to find them in their supply chain and take corrective action.”

The announcement comes at the same time an Inquiry into Establishing a Modern Slavery Act for Australia is hearing evidence after receiving 200 submissions from business, individuals, government agencies and civil society in Australia and around the world. In addition to the reporting requirements for business, many submissions have called for an independent anti-slavery commissioner similar to the UK Commissioner who can evaluate, coordinate and monitor Australia’s anti-slavery framework and strategies.

“This is an historic opportunity to evolve Australia's response and we look forward to working with the Government to ensure that robust legislation sets a new bar for eradicating slavery here and globally," National Commander of The Salvation Army, Commissioner Floyd Tidd said.

Luke Geary, Managing Partner of Salvos Legal said: “We have been providing free legal advice and representation to victims of slavery here in Australia for almost 10 years now. We look forward to collaborating with the business community through our Modern Slavery Practice to ensure clean supply chains can be meaningfully evidenced. I am confident that Australian business is capable of world-class leadership and innovation in tackling modern slavery.”

Freedom Partnership submission to Modern Slavery Act Inquiry: http://bit.ly/2uZUPUj

Australian Faith Leaders Call for A Modern Slavery Act in Australia: http://afn.org.au/2016-faith-leaders-letter/

Freedom Partnership website: www.endslavery.savos.org.au

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