Corporate human rights reporting in Australia has changed.
The Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth) makes boards responsible for public statements about their entities’ efforts to assess and manage the risk of modern slavery in their operations and supply chains. More importantly, it has triggered an increase in stakeholder expectations around human rights and is influencing major business decisions in terms of investment, partnership or procurement.
The financial services sector faces an elevated risk of modern slavery within its operations and supply chains as a result of intersecting factors, including:
- connection and contribution to a diverse range of industries and assets globally
- traditionally narrow focus on highly skilled nature of direct employees leading to the view that financial services are low risk
- low visibility over multi-tiered supply chains which cross into other high-risk sectors, across high-risk geographies
- increased outsourcing and offshoring of assets and associated services.
The financial sector’s connection with every sector and industry means it has a pivotal role to play in combating modern slavery in Australia and globally. Taking a rights-based approach to addressing modern slavery means placing ‘risks to people’ at the heart of your response. We hope this guidance will provide inspiration to the sector to work together to find innovative solutions to address this pressing human rights issue.
A practical guide
KPMG Australia and the Australian Human Rights Commission have collaborated to bring you ‘Financial Services & Modern Slavery’, a practical guide to:
- highlight particular modern slavery risks prevalent in the financial services sector, including in banking, insurance, investment and asset management
- provide tips for the financial services sector on leading practice and a rights-based approach to managing modern slavery risk
- foster transparent modern slavery reporting for the benefit of business, government and the people at risk of harm.
Over the coming months, KPMG and the Australian Human Rights Commission will release a series of sector-specific guides.