BIC Services has always led the way in employee entitlements, fair pay and equal opportunity. It is hard to imagine, but more than 40 million people worldwide are believed to be victims of modern slavery, including more than 15000 in Australia.
After years of deliberation, in December 2018, the Australian Federal Parliament has finally passed the Modern Slavery Act 2018. It takes effect January 2019, with reports due within six months after the end of your reporting period.
For BIC, our people represent the best of our business and we have always been committed to fair and ethical treatment of our employees. BIC strongly opposes any and all human rights violations, including acts of slavery or human trafficking – and we are committed to not only ensuring our people are treated fairly but also those of our supply chain and our industry as a whole.
Transparency across the supply chain will only happen with pressure and commitment from Australia’s largest players. BIC has implemented a Modern Slavery Framework (MSF), which has been developed to address the requirements of the new act, as well as ensure targets are met across the supply chain.
The key components of the framework include:
- Relationships and Supply Chain
- Prevention and Protection
- Monitoring and Reporting
RELATIONSHIPS and SUPPLY CHAIN
As an Australian owned and operated business, we have a corporate social responsibility to establish a long-term relationship with all partners and suppliers and work together to seek sustainable solutions and drive improvements.
We are not only holding ourselves accountable but also our partners and suppliers. We are committed to ensuring we only work with suppliers who also comply with MSA legislation and policy. We monitor this via a register of approved suppliers who have completed our supplier questionnaire and who have been through our evaluation process.
PREVENTION AND PROTECTION
As a large employee with a diverse workforce, we are committed to raising awareness of the new legislation and our support for it. We will actively advocate for the prevention and protection of people who are at risk of being subjected to modern slavery.
By putting in place checks and balances, we are focused on preventing employees within our industry from being subjected to modern slavery. While many may think this doesn’t happen in Australia – it is reported that over 15,000 people in Australia have been subject to modern slavery.
Preventing this starts with awareness – it has taken some time for this act to be passed in Australia and there are still more changes that will take effect in the coming years – companies will be held accountable and therefore we need to be responsible for educating and informing our own teams, our partners and suppliers.
Protection starts with policy – our PEOPLE policy has always far exceeded the minimum requirements – we are known in the industry for fairness, respect and integrity – and these values are reflected in our HR policies.
MONITORING AND REPORTING
At BIC, we understand that a true commitment to tackling modern slavery is demonstrated through complete achievement of target commitments made in our Framework and transparent reporting.
By on-going monitoring of our performance, we will ensure our genuine commitment to our goals and allow us to identify areas of challenge and offer areas of improvement and enhancement along our anti-slavery journey.
We have formulated a steering committee and will meet and review our adherence to the MSA and CAF (Cleaning Accountability Framework) to ensure we continue to demonstrate ‘best in class’ standards for our employees and those of the entire industry.
We encourage our employees to report directly to our HR team if they have any questions or concerns regarding unfair treatment or workplace practices. Having teams offsite, it is vital that communication is fluid and we therefore rely on communication from our teams on the ground.
To learn more about our PEOPLE policy and being part of the BIC team click here.