GLA and Sainsbury's - Working to Keep Exploitation out of Supply Chain
15th December 2014
The GLA has teamed up with Sainsbury’s in a ground-breaking partnership between the UK’s foremost investigator of labour exploitation and the supermarket to deliver bespoke training for its product suppliers.
The training focuses on assisting Sainsbury’s suppliers in identifying whether hidden exploitative practices exist at the farms, pack houses, processing plants and factories throughout the global supply-chain.
This first of its kind training pilots this week with GLA officers providing a package that has been developed to meet the specific requirements of the Sainsbury’s product suppliers.
GLA Chief Executive Paul Broadbent said: “We are delighted to have forged this industry leading agreement and to work alongside Sainsbury’s in this way.
“There is a real commitment and desire on both sides to identify any practice that subjects workers to exploitation.
“Such activity, by its very nature, is kept hidden by its perpetrators as far as possible and is difficult to detect but there are indicators to look out for and these are what we will be teaching Sainsbury’s product suppliers to spot.
“By raising awareness through training, Sainsbury’s is showing a determination to identify any issues of concern. I applaud them for this and will continue to work alongside them to tackle it.”
This new training arrangement builds upon the GLA’s Supplier/Retail Protocol that was launched in October 2013 by Home Secretary Theresa May.
The protocol was a commitment from major retailers and suppliers to share information and intelligence with the authority about suspicions and wrongdoings with confidence.
It is a key part of the GLA’s ongoing programme to raise awareness of worker exploitation within the specified regulated sector of agriculture, horticulture, shellfish gathering and all associated processing and packaging.
Judith Batchelar, Director of Sainsbury’s Brand adds: “We’re proud to have carried out the first pilot training for our suppliers in partnership with GLA, we hope this takes us a step further in tackling hidden labour exploitation.
“Modern slavery within global supply chains is a serious issue and it is a priority of ours to work with our suppliers to address it.”
Press release issued by GLA Communications and Information Officer Paul Fearn. For more information from the GLA contact 0115 959 7069 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notes to editors
1. The GLA operates throughout the UK and is a Non-Departmental Public Body.
2. The authority was formed in 2005 in the wake of the Morecambe Bay cockle picking disaster when 23 Chinese workers drowned on the sands.
3. The GLA licences companies that supply labour (gangmasters) for agriculture, horticulture, shellfish gathering as well as all associated processing and packaging.
4. Its main strategic priorities are to prevent worker exploitation, protect vulnerable people and tackle unlicensed and criminal activity.
5. Under the Gangmasters (Licensing) Act (2004), it is illegal either to operate as, or employ the services of, an unlicensed gangmaster.