Stop Slavery Award To Engage Global Companies
6 April 2016 at 8:30 pm
The Thomson Reuters Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the global news and information provider, has launched a high-profile award aimed at engaging the world’s biggest companies in the fight against forced labour.
The Stop Slavery Award is the first global accolade to recognise businesses that have excelled in efforts to try to eradicate forced labour from their supply chains.
The award will spearhead a campaign to demonstrate that businesses can play a critical role in eradicating forced labour and guiding consumer decisions.
“The ultimate goal of the initiative is to galvanise more companies to investigate, improve and eradicate unfair and illegal labour practices in their supply chains,” Thomson Reuters Foundation CEO and founder of the prize Monique Villa said.
“This is a business friendly initiative. The Stop Slavery Award is about rewarding the courage of those businesses that have gone above and beyond to ensure their revenue is not tainted by modern-day slavery.
“ At a time when shareholders are increasingly vigilant over the socio-economic footprint of many corporations, the Award is an important contribution to ensure that the fight against slavery is perceived both as a human rights priority, and a business imperative.”
Companies wishing to apply for the award need to complete a questionnaire developed in partnership with global law firm Baker & McKenzie and other experts in the field.
The questionnaire highlights best practice in corporate commitment and reporting, performance measurement, business partner engagement, risk assessment and investigation and remediation.
The foundation said the standards were intended to ensure that anti-slavery policies and procedures were embedded throughout the behaviour, operations and supply chains of the companies applying for the Award.
Winners of the Stop Slavery Award will be selected by a judging board composed of Nobel Peace Prize Kailash Satyarthi, global human rights and business expert John Ruggie, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr, Britain’s Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner Kevin Hyland, Edelman President and CEO Richard Edelman, and international criminal prosecutor Patricia Sellers.
The inaugural Stop Slavery Award will be presented on November 30 this year during the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s annual women’s rights and anti-trafficking conference Trust Women.
Winning companies will receive the right to use the Stop Slavery logo for one year, helping raise cross-sector awareness on forced labour.
The United Nation’s International Labour Organization estimates forced labour generates $150 billion in illegal profits every a year – three times the annual profit of Apple, the world’s most profitable company.
International anti-slavery NGO Walk Free estimates that some 36 million people are trapped in modern slavery around the world, the highest number in history. Industries at high risk include garment manufacturing, mining, fishing, hospitality and construction.