2018 Annual UK Top100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers’ Index rankings announced

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Index recognises individuals from all business sectors, third sector, media and academia who are influencers in raising awareness to end modern slavery and labour exploitation.

Kevin Bales, Professor of Contemporary Slavery and Research Director of the Rights Lab, University of Nottingham, has been recognised as the number one influencer in the inaugural 2018 Annual UK Top100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers’ Index. The rankings were announced on 26 September by Baroness Young of Hornsey OBE at a Recognition Dinner held at RIBA, Central London.

The Top10 influencers from business, third sector, media and academia are:

1 Professor Kevin Bales, University of Nottingham

2 Livia Firth, Eco-Age

3 Tom Smith, Walmart

4 Monique Villa, Thomson Reuters Foundation

5 Aidan McQuade, Independent

6 Nick Grono, The Freedom Fund

7 Lucy Siegle, The Observer

8 Andrew Wallis OBE, Unseen

9 Safia Minney MBE, Po-Zu

10 Dr Todd Landman, University of Nottingham

View the rankings of the 2018 Top100 influencers (PDF).

Professor Bales, who addressed more than 100 of his fellow influencers and their guests at the Recognition Dinner, said: “I am honoured to be recognised. While the global crime of slavery and human trafficking is daunting, the truth is that we can bring it to an end. The 40 million slaves in the world today represent the smallest fraction of the world population to ever be in slavery. The $150 billion they generate in criminal proceeds is the smallest proportion in history, by far, of the global economy. Pushed to the dark edges of our global society, slavery is standing on the edge of its own extinction – it just needs a good hard push.”

The inaugural 2018 Annual UK Top100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers’ Index, co-created and co-curated by BRE and Sustain Worldwide, has been conceived to simultaneously raise awareness of modern slavery and labour exploitation while recognising the key influencers who are supporting its eradication. Anti-trafficking charity Hope for Justice is the official charitable partner.

The Index is based on the combination of influence on social media, as measured by Kred scores, and advocacy – policy input, speaking and media engagement – in public life, which is evaluated by desktop research. The two metrics are then aggregated via a proprietary algorithm and evenly weighted to produce the final rankings. An independent panel has verified the Index’s transparency, impartiality and robustness.

Modern Slavery is an ‘umbrella’ term for labour exploitation, forced labour, child labour and human trafficking. In 2017, 5,145 potential victims were referred to Britain’s National Referral Mechanism, a 35 per cent increase on the previous year. The UK Government has estimated there are between 10,000-13,000 people held in modern slavery in Britain today. The Global Slavery Index has estimated there are 45.8million people across 167 countries in modern day slavery.

The Baroness Young of Hornsey OBE, who hosted the recognition dinner, has continued to work tirelessly to have a Bill passed that will require public bodies to include a statement on Modern Slavery and human trafficking in their annual report. Baroness Young said: “Modern Slavery has no place in our society, and I fully support this cross-sector initiative that shines a light on the issue by recognising the individuals who are positively influencing the debate to bring about its eradication.”

Dr Shamir Ghumra, BREEAM Director at BRE, who was the master of ceremonies at the Recognition Dinner, said: “The 2018 Annual UK Top100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers’ Index has played a significant role in raising awareness of modern slavery and labour exploitation amongst the business community whose supply chains are at risk, often unwittingly, of exposure to abuse. I congratulate Professor Bales, and the entire Top100, whose endeavours continue to make a difference.”

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For press information or additional comment, please contact BRE’s press office on [email protected] or +44 (0)1923 664455.

Photographs of the Top 10 receiving their awards can be seen on the BRE Flickr feed

Notes to editors

The inaugural 2018 Annual UK Top100 Corporate Modern Slavery Influencers’ Index was launched on 1 March 2018. The unranked Top100 Influencers were revealed on 17 May 2018. The Top100 Influencers by ranking were announced at a recognition dinner at RIBA, Central London on 26 September 2018. There was no requirement to ‘enter’ or be nominated for the Index. However, those who were the most active and influential on the issues had a greater possibility of being recognised in the Top100 and featured highest in the rankings.

www.msa4construction.com/Top100Index #Top100Index

The Index is complemented by the third annual Modern Slavery and Ethical Labour in Construction Leadership Symposium: ‘Eradicating Modern Slavery: How Good Governance Demonstrates Leadership and Mitigates Risk’. The Symposium, to be held at RIBA, central London, on 27 September, draws together the corporate leaders, professional institutions and membership associations, and public and third sector advocates who are driving the agenda to end modern slavery and labour exploitation in the UK and global supply chains. www.MSA4Construction.com #MSA4Construction2018

BRE is a world leading building science centre. Our clients use our sustainability, safety and security services, the BRE Academy and our Innovation Centres, to deliver on their social, environmental and economic goals. We are committed to developing knowledge on every aspect of the built environment and we set the standards for the way buildings, homes and communities are made to keep people safe, protect the environment, make buildings affordable and to create places where people want to live, work and play www.bregroup.com

Our standards include the Ethical Labour Sourcing Standard (ELS) BES 6002 that supports companies to understand the profile of their social/ethical governance, including their human rights challenges. The ELS provides a framework for verifying ethical labour sourcing, and a route for companies working across all sectors and geographies to verify their systems and processes, including the reporting requirements of the Modern Slavery Act 2015, Section 54 Transparency in Supply Chains (TISC) www.elsonline.co.uk

The Baroness Young of Hornsey OBE is a champion of human rights. She has introduced a Bill before Parliament that proposes public authorities are included in requirements under Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (transparency in supply chains [TISC]). Presently, the private sector alone is required to comply with TISC. She has a particular interest in modern slavery issues in the fashion and football sectors.

 Sustain Worldwide is a communications business that works with clients and partners to convey their values and messages through the most effective channels – Press/PR, social media and stakeholder events – to reach their target audiences. It has a particular interest, knowledge and expertise in responsible and ethical sourcing in global supply chains and their inter-relationship with human rights, modern slavery and labour exploitation.