Beyond Compliance in the Hotel Sector: A Review of UK Modern Slavery Act Statements

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Beyond Compliance in the Hotel Sector: A Review of UK Modern Slavery Act Statements+image

Description

The travel and tourism industry continues to see uninterrupted growth, with more people than ever before travelling for work or leisure to a broader range of destinations. Yet this growth brings with it a greater risk of modern slavery.

There is a high-risk of exploitation within the hotel sector due to its vulnerable workforce, complex supply chains with little transparency, and limited oversight from brands and multinational hotel companies as a result of extensive franchising. In the franchising model, hotel brands lend their name and customer care standards to third parties, but usually stipulate far less about the standards they expect for the employment of workers, even in countries where abuse is endemic.

To assess how the hotel sector is responding to these risks, this report reviews the statements produced by 71 hotel companies under the UK Modern Slavery Act, which requires companies with a turnover of £36 million to release annual statements on their anti-slavery efforts. We looked at whether the statements meet the Act’s minimum requirements, but also if they go “beyond compliance” with effective responses to modern slavery risks — including sexual exploitation, forced labour, and the poor treatment of migrant workers.

The assessment of statements featured in this report is available on WikiRate, and was a collaboration with Walk Free, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, and the Australian National University.

In the Media
Company updates

Since producing the report, we have received the following updates and clarifications.

Accor UK Business & Leisure Hotels Limited confirmed it has a modern slavery statement available here.

Four Seasons Hotels confirmed it has a modern slavery statement available here.