The Walk Free Foundation has a unique business to business engagement strategy. Drawing on the standing of its founder, Andrew Forrest, who is Chairman of Fortescue Metals Group, the world’s fourth largest iron ore exporter, it engages in direct Chairman and CEO level discussions on efforts big business can take to eradicate slavery.
As a trusted private sector partner, Mr Forrest can speak frankly about the challenges business faces in eradicating modern slavery in an environment of increasingly dispersed supply chains. The business engagement strategy is used to bring business together to work through these challenges and develop solutions that will work.
While much of this work happens behind the scenes and requires confidentiality to be successful, Mr Forrest also engages on the topic publicly during major forums involving senior business executives and chief procurement officers.
Businesses have enormous leverage over the production of goods and services as a result of their enormous purchasing power. Through a sharp focus on ensuring their own supply chains are slavery proof, businesses can create a ripple effect throughout the broader economy, helping to ensure modern slavery is not only criminal but also demonstrated to be uneconomic to business.
Walk Free together with the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) is establishing a professional standard for Chief Procurement Officers (CPO) to eradicate slavery in their supply chains around the world. CIPS has 100,000 members globally and will be the professional association to empower CPOs with information to eliminate slavery through their supply chains.
With Walk Free CIPS has:
- Created an Ethical Procurement and Supply E-learning and online test
- Developed a Primer on Modern Slavery for Procurement Professionals
- Published a Guide to Ethical and Sustainable Procurement