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Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement

Our supply chains

Stockton Borough Council operates within the United Kingdom, which is considered at low risk of modern slavery and human trafficking, relative to other parts of the world. While the Council has a high level of confidence that policies and processes are in place to protect against risks of modern slavery and human trafficking in the supply chains with regards to Tier 1 suppliers, it is more difficult to be confident about links further up the supply chain. Higher risk categories identified by the procurement team include: cleaning, construction (particularly demolition, asbestos removal, groundworks, clearance/stripping work), clothing manufacture (particularly involving imported textiles), security (manned guards), domestic furniture supply and manufacture, environmental (waste management, recycling), horticultural (grounds maintenance and plant nurseries), some social care/personal services (including taxis), recruitment/agency staff provision and dry imported foods (rice, cocoa).

The Council is committed to ensuring that its suppliers adhere to the highest standards of ethics and to ensure that suppliers treat their workers with dignity and respect and in accordance with the requirements set out in employment legislation. Whilst a high proportion of suppliers have a presence within the North-East, the Council's supply chains stretch across the world.

Raw materials and components can come from sources anywhere in the world and there may be links in the supply chain which could be involved in modern slavery and human trafficking. As the customer, the Council will make clear to our suppliers, and those wishing to do business with us, that they are required to provide confirmation that they are compliant with the Modern Slavery Act 2015. They will also be required to confirm their subcontractors and suppliers comply with the act.

The Council spends around £200m each year on supplies, services and works. This large and varied supply chain is majority based in the UK, but the Council understands that supply chains for these contracts may include countries where there is a higher risk of modern slavery and human trafficking. The Council also understands that certain types of contract activity may present greater risk to employees of exploitation, so the Council plans and manages contracts in categories, enabling better identification and risk mitigation in supply chains and production methods.

The Council's Constitution includes Contract Procedure Rules. These internal regulations govern processes for the way the Council buys supplies, services and works.

The Council has a contract with an external agency for temporary/ interim staff to deploy within the Council and meet service needs. The Agency has robust procedures in place to check identity and eligibility to work, and a process to enable payment of salary directly into an appropriate personal bank account. 

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