Talking Points

NZ Government pledges to fight modern slavery

NZ government pledge to tackle modern slavery

The New Zealand Government has announced a new five-year plan to tackle forced labour, people trafficking and slavery.

The high-level framework outlines 28 actions aimed at preventing, protecting, and enforcing against the practices. At its core is modern slavery in globalised business supply chains, including mining, fishing, harvesting, manufacturing, and packaging. The purpose is to ensure that NZ businesses don’t enable exploitation, either intentionally or not.

Under OECD guidelines, released in 2001, New Zealand had already committed to holding all multinational companies (operating here) accountable for breaching human rights and employing forced labour. However, as The Conversation NZ reports, past attempts to make progress have been repeatedly rejected in Parliament, mostly due to the opposition of the National and ACT parties.