Modern Slavery Statement
For the year ended 31 March 2021
Introduction to Victim Support
Victim Support is the independent charity for people affected by crime and traumatic events in England and Wales. Our specialist teams provide individual, independent, emotional and practical help to enable people to cope and recover from the effects of crime. Our services are free and available to everyone, whether or not the crime has been reported and regardless of when it happened.
Victim Support’s charitable activities include supporting the victims of modern slavery and human trafficking under contracts let by Police and Crime Commissioners and Local Authorities in England and Wales.
This statement is made pursuant to section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015. It constitutes Victim Support’s slavery and human trafficking statement for the financial year ended 31 March 2021. It covers the activities of Victim Support and its wholly-owned subsidiaries: Victims Support Limited, VS Trading (Cornwall) Limited and Victim Support Cymru.
Structure and supply chain
Victim Support has around 1,000 employees and over 1,000 volunteers all based in England and Wales. Our employees are largely directly employed and are not in any category which is generally seen to be vulnerable to modern slavery in the UK, so our focus is to ensure there are policies and procedures in place for our contractors and suppliers.
The charity uses a wide range of suppliers who supply goods and services that support the operations of the charity. The charity recognises the importance of its role in implementing the guidance of the Modern Slavery Act and the consequences of its implications.
Policies on modern slavery
Policies and procedures are in place aiming to minimise the risk of modern slavery in our supply chain. Specifically, a procurement policy that sets out requirements for buying goods and services and due diligence required on suppliers; and a whistleblowing policy and procedure that encourages staff to report any concerns.
The procurement policy includes a specific section on ensuring the risk of modern slavery in our supply chain is minimised. The procurement policy is used to draw the attention of the charity’s employees and volunteers to the risks relating to modern slavery and child and forced labour, ensuring that they have access to the necessary information.
Due diligence processes
Due diligence is carried out on significant suppliers where there may be a modern slavery risk. This includes a requirement for up-to-date independent evidence (for example up-to-date audited accounts) of the level of turnover/income of applicable suppliers and where their level of turnover/income is above £36M review of their latest modern slavery statement. Suppliers operating in sectors where there is a greater risk of modern slavery are subject to review even if their turnover is below the limit at which at which a modern slavery statement is required.
We risk assess whether there are any parts of our business and supply chains where there is a risk of slavery and human trafficking taking place. Our assessment, taking account of the nature of our business and sources of supply, is that the risk is low.
Our Senior Management Team considers the effectiveness of our measures for ensuring that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in any part of our business or supply chains and reports to the Board of Trustees of Victim Support accordingly.
Training for staff
During the year we have provided advice and guidance to those in Victim Support who have procurement responsibilities. We provide eLearning on modern slavery and a quiz to enable assessment of understanding. Staff are asked to look for signs of modern slavery when a supplier’s staff attend our premises.
This statement has been approved by the Board of Trustees of Victim Support.
Chair of Board of Trustees, Victim Support