Katherine Tyler, a senior associate in our Criminal Litigation team, shares her thoughts with The Times about London Fashion Week, the garment industry, Modern Slavery Act and human rights violations - Briefs will always be in fashion.
Transparency is the new pre-eminent principle, so consumers can understand what lies behind the label. As Katherine Tyler of Kingsley Napley points out, this includes obligations under the Modern Slavery Act 2015, especially because the international clothing business is among the top five areas contributing to modern slavery, according to the Global Slavery Index.
“The effect of the act,” Tyler explains “is to require certain UK companies to make a statement evidencing that they have tracked back through their supply chain to reassure themselves about working conditions and pay of those labouring in its service, or to publicly state that they have taken no such steps.
“The human rights violations most frequently associated with the garment industry stem from sweatshop labour. These may include modern slavery or servitude or compulsory labour — all of which are criminalised by the act.” Companies placing orders with a contractor in their supply chain who is using such practices could attract potential criminal liability, she adds.
The article was published in The Times on 21 February 2019.