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The Salvation Army hails successful passage of Modern Slavery Act

29 November 2018

The Salvation Army enthusiastically welcomes the passage of the Modern Slavery Act through Federal Parliament.

“This legislation achieves an important milestone in Australia’s fight against modern slavery,” The Salvation Army’s National Policy & Advocacy Coordinator Heather Moore said.

“It marks almost two years of tireless work by members and staff of Parliament, staff from the Department of Home Affairs, the business community and non-governmental organisations. Some have been working toward this goal for ten years. We are humbled and gratified to have been a part of it.”

Through its initiative to end modern slavery, The Salvation Army has been instrumental in mobilising community, business and government to realise their contribution to modern slavery and take action to take action to eradicate it.

Ms Moore says she is pleased the modern slavery reporting requirement, which will require approximately 3000 large businesses and other organisations to publish annual statements on their actions to address modern slavery in their supply chains and operations, will include several elements The Salvation Army recommended throughout last year's Modern Slavery Act Inquiry.

This includes a publicly accessible, government-funded repository for statements; mandatory reporting criteria with effectiveness measures; and extensive guidance and support for reporting bodies.

“Together, these components will begin to facilitate greater transparency, accountability, and a common understanding of what defines success,” Ms Moore said.

"This is the first step toward establishing greater transparency of where the risks of slavery are and who is doing what to address those risks. We cannot end slavery if we don't know where it is; nor can we assist those trapped in exploitation without ensuring that no one can profit on the backs of vulnerable people to undercut their competitors."

She adds, “we are particularly pleased that the Government will lead by example by holding itself to the same standards as business and others required to report under the legislation.”

The Salvation Army looks forward to continuing its partnership with parliamentarians and business leaders to strengthen and improve the act over time to end modern slavery in Australia.

For more information or media comment, please contact: The Salvation Army Media Department – (02) 9466 3143

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