Major Global Brands Commit to Preventing Forced Labour in Supply Chains

Posted: 
06/19/17
Themes: 
Global Compact on Migration, Labour Migration

Germany - The UN Migration Agency (IOM) joins leading global brands, government officials, trade associations, recruiters and other expert organizations in Berlin to tackle forced labour in supply chains and encourage international companies to commit to the ethical recruitment of migrant workers.

Participants at the Annual Leadership Forum for Responsible Recruitment are sharing best practices on effective approaches to ensure that migrant workers in their supply chains are recruited ethically, including strategies to promote and implement the Employer Pays Principle.

“Finding work overseas can be a complicated process. Because jobseekers need job matching and migration assistance, they often end up paying extortionate fees and face other forms of exploitation when dealing with unlicensed or unvetted middle men” said Lara White, a senior labour migration specialist with the UN Migration Agency, a member of the Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment.

“Ethical recruitment and hiring practices, where employers pay recruitment fees rather than workers, is at the core of the Employer Pays Principle and is key to combatting forced labour and modern slavery,” she told the forum. “Ethical recruitment is not only the right thing to do, it’s also good for business.”

The conference in Berlin opened today with an announcement by the Institute for Human Rights and Business that four more international brands, General Electric, Mars Inc., Tesco and Vinci, joined seven other global companies in the Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment.  In doing so, they join The Coca-Cola Company, HP Inc., Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IKEA, M&S, Unilever and Walmart in committing to the Employer Pays Principle and working toward broader adoption of ethical recruitment practices in the business community.

“We welcome the growing momentum among major global companies and recruitment agencies to change the way that migrant workers are recruited, and to help eliminate exploitation and abuse in supply chains,” said White.

The conference is co-hosted by the Institute for Human Rights and Business, Humanity United, and the Leadership Group for Responsible Recruitment.

For further information, please contact Melissa Winkler, Tel: +41227179814  Email: mwinkler@iom.int