SUPPLIERS Human rights and modern slavery

Human rights and modern slavery

Gold Fields has for some time been focused on safeguarding the human rights of those involved in its supply chain. With a current international focus on modern slavery practices, reinforced by legislation in certain jurisdictions (for example the UK and Australia), Gold Fields is seeking to improve its understanding of its supplier base to ensure we procure only from businesses whose products and services have been ethically sourced and are free of forced labour.

To ensure compliance with Australia’s recently introduced modern slavery legislation, our Supply Chain team is currently focused on:

  • Identifying high-risk sustainability suppliers within our supply chain;
  • Developing an audit "plan-of-attack" focusing primarily on categories of spend known to be high-risk;
  • Driving acknowledgement by suppliers of Gold Fields’ Values and Group Supplier Code of Conduct;
  • Updating policies, procedures, and contract templates to meet the requirements of the legislation;
  • Training personnel in how to identify and address human rights and/or modern slavery issues; and
  • Collaborating with industry peers with a view to eliminating modern slavery from our supply chains.
Human rights supplier self-assessment questionnaire

Gold Fields, in conjunction with peer companies, has developed a modern slavery toolkit, comprising an “Understanding Modern Slavery” brochure, frequently asked questions, and a human rights supplier self-assessment Questionnaire (SAQ). The SAQ is designed to support the identification of modern slavery risks, foster collaborative efforts between suppliers and organisations to address those risks, improve supply chain transparency, and identify areas for further due diligence. Gold Fields will roll out the SAQ to selected suppliers and engage with them on the information supplied during the course of 2020.

In the future, the form-based SAQ is likely to be replaced by an on-line supplier qualification system, which will enable suppliers to register and upload their self-assessment questionnaire responses.

Supplier human rights risk assessment tool

While the SAQ is a valuable tool and critical input, it should not be relied on as the sole measure of a supplier’s modern slavery compliance risk. Gold Fields has commenced building a platform to assess supplier human rights risk using data from multiple sources (including the SAQ), which are designed to moderate supplier human rights self-assessment scores.

Gold Fields’ Procurement and Contracts personnel in Australia have received training on how to recognise and respond to risks of modern slavery in the supply chain. This training will continue to be developed alongside Gold Fields’ work in this space.

Third party verification of human rights compliance

In addition to completing an on-line human rights supplier self-assessment questionnaire, prospective suppliers may receive a request to allow third-party access to your company’s operations or manufacturing facilities, for the purpose of conducting an audit of worker conditions.

This request may extend to other suppliers within your supply chain and is designed to provide Gold Fields with comfort that appropriate labour practices are in place and that fundamental human rights are being observed. Should the audit results flag an issue, you will be given suitable opportunity to address the findings.