On March 11, 2021, the Home Office launched an online registry for organisations required to publish annual modern slavery statements under Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (“MSA”). The launch of the registry makes good on one of a series of commitments made by the UK government in October 2020 to strengthen the transparency in supply chains provision of the MSA, which we discussed in greater detail in a previous blog post (here).
Commercial organisations that carry on all or part of a business in the United Kingdom and have a total annual turnover of £36 million or more currently are required to publish a modern slavery statement reporting on the steps that they have taken during the financial year to ensure that slavery and human trafficking are not taking place in their business or supply chains.
The UK government’s 2020 UK Annual Report on Modern Slavery reported that 17 percent of covered organisations had not published a modern slavery statement and were unlikely to be covered by a group modern slavery statement. One goal of the new registry is to enable the UK government to more effectively monitor compliance with the reporting obligations imposed by the MSA.