ALHR Submission Modern Slavery Bill 2018

July 24, 2018

ALHR has made a submission to the Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee in response to the Commonwealth Modern Slavery Bill 2018.

ALHR welcomes the introduction of the Bill into Parliament. It is an important legislative step in requiring businesses to take responsibility for human rights by engaging in a ‘race to the top’ to combat modern slavery throughout global supply chains.

We strongly support the need for a comprehensive suite of new national laws to combat the issue of modern slavery, and looks forward to working with the Government and other parties to ensure an effective Australian Modern Slavery Act is passed. Given the extensive work undertaken to bring this Bill to Parliament, along with the strong business and bipartisan support for the introduction of modern slavery legislation, ALHR encourages all Parliamentarians to work collaboratively and in good faith to see effective modern slavery legislation enacted as a matter of priority.

ALHR specifically welcomes many aspects of the Bill, which reflect the recommendations of the year-long Inquiry into a Modern Slavery Act in Australia in 2017  by the Foreign Affairs and Aid Sub-Committee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade which resulted in the Hidden in Plain Sight report. Unfortunately some of the Inquiry’s key recommendations, aimed at combating domestic slavery and addressing lessons learnt from the UK’s modern slavery supply chain reporting regime, are missing from the Bill.

In our submission ALHR makes a range of recommendations regarding possible amendments to the Bill. You can read the full submission here