Higher education purchasing consortium seeks modern slavery due diligence reports
Two new framework agreements set up by the London Universities Purchasing Consortium (LUPC) have now placed modern slavery very highly on their list of priorities when procuring goods and services.
LUPC states that suppliers must produce an annual, updated report highlighting prominent areas, countries and further suppliers in their supply chain who could be at risk of exploitation. The contracted suppliers must then also denote the steps they have taken to minimise any such risks.
A Modern Slavery Action Plan must also be drafted, as well as designated a dedicated team member to work closely with LUPC in its creation and implementation.
LUPC has a trailblazing attitude towards combatting modern slavery, having become the first consortium to make a slavery statement in accordance with the Modern Slavery Act. Whilst this is not a legal requirement, LUPC have taken a firm stance to ensure human exploitation is not present within their institutions. Actively encouraging supplier transparency and enacting real and measurable change on worker conditions are just two of the main drivers for the consortium implementing this policy.
“At LUPC we don’t just aim to uncover human rights abuses. Neither do we admonish suppliers. Instead, we actively encourage supplier transparency and are committed to working with suppliers to address human rights issues when these are found in supply chains affecting our members”, stated LUPC director Andy Davies.
The example set by LUPC could be seen as a demonstration of how areas other than pricing are profound considerations within procurement. Maintaining your organisation’s Corporate Social Responsibility policies and striving to improve your ethical practices are certain to positively impact your chances of bid success.