Modern Slavery Act 2015 comes into force
31st July 2015
The GLA today welcomed the coming into force of the first of the provisions of the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
The first series of measures, focused on criminal justice provisions, to come into force include:
• ensuring that those who commit these crimes are subject to the toughest possible asset recovery regime
• introducing Slavery and Trafficking Reparation orders, which encourage the courts to use seized assets to compensate victims
• the commencement of regional pilots of the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) – the system used across Government and by various agencies to refer, protect and support victims of modern slavery
The GLA is an organisation named in the Act (section 52) on whom there is a statutory requirement to report potential victims of slavery, servitude and forced or compulsory labour, to ensure that they receive the support they require.
In welcoming the operation of the Act Paul Broadbent, GLA CEO, said:
“This is a major step forward in the UK’s response against all forms of exploitation. As experts on labour exploitation we have been effective in identifying and referring potential victims for support prior to this new legislative requirement.
The GLA will continue to play an effective part with other areas of the UK law enforcement response against modern slavery. We await the further implementation of the provisions of the Act so that we can continue to support the new preventive framework to eradicate this crime in the UK”.
The link to the Home Office press statement is here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/modern-slavery-offenders-face-life-in-jail-asmodern-slavery-act-comes-into-force
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 both to operate as, or employ the services of, an unlicensed gangmaster.