The Australian government should introduce a modern slavery act, establish an anti-slavery commissioner, create a compensation scheme for victims and force big corporations to root out exploitation in their supply chains, an inquiry has found.
The inquiry into modern slavery in Australia delivered its final report on Thursday evening, providing a detailed blueprint for the creation of a modern slavery act in Australia.
Action on modern slavery has been spurred by a string of controversies, from the exploitation of migrant fruit pickers, Australian involvement in damaging orphanage tourism and the exploitation of cleaners.
The latest estimates suggest 40 million people around the world and 4,300 people in Australia are victims of modern slavery, including through human trafficking, debt bondage, forced labour and other slavery-like practices.
Crucially, the inquiry’s report, titled “Hidden in Plain Sight”, has called for the creation of an independent anti-slavery commissioner, mirroring a successful model in the UK.
The inquiry also wants to force big corporations with a revenue of $50m or more to prove they are not profiting or gaining a competitive advantage from slavery in their supply chains.