The NSW Parliament passed the NSW Modern Slavery Act 2018 in June 2018. The Act is yet to be proclaimed. The Legislative Council Standing Committee on Social Issues was tasked with examining the Act and to make recommendations based on their inquiry.
The report is now available. A number of recommendations have been made, including that the NSW Government:
- work with the Australian Government to harmonise the threshold for reporting with the Modern Slavery Act 2018 (Cth) to $50 million (currently the threshold in the Commonwealth Act is $100 million)
- develop a voluntary reporting mechanism for businesses falling under the $50 million threshold
- Give victims of acts of modern slavery access to recognition payments under the Victims Rights and Support Acts 2013
- Establish a working group to develop further amendments to the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007 to protect potential victims of forced marriage
- require local councils to have the same procurement and reporting obligations as NSW Government agencies
- take into account the comments and recommendations from this report, with the aim of the Act commencing by January 2021.