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Labor to Support ‘Toothless’ Anti-slavery Laws

Last edited 28th June 2018

Labor to Support ‘Toothless’ Anti-slavery Laws

The Labor opposition has labelled the proposed reforms “toothless”, but plans to grant them bipartisan support.

If passed, the laws will mean around 3,000 businesses in Australia with an annual turnover of $100 million or more will need to identity any modern slavery in their supply chain, and report it to authorities.

“Businesses will then have to detail what steps they have taken, and will take, to address these risks,” said Assistant Minister for Home Affairs Alex Hawke.

“This bill will enable large businesses, consumers, civil society and government to work together to eliminate modern slavery in supply chains.”

A Modern Slavery Business Engagement Unit, costing $3.6 million, will set up the reporting requirements and support the 3,000 affected Australian businesses.

Modern slavery includes where people are forced into prostitution, or forced to work for low wages in construction, sweatshops or food supply chains. It can include also underpayment of wages, denied visa extensions by employers or being forced to live in squalid accommodation.

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