CTPAT | Combating Forced Labor in Your Supply Chain

Best Practices for Combating Forced Labor in Your Supply Chain


CTPAT Members must take all reasonable steps to ensure that their supply chains are free of forced labor. Building awareness of the problem and working with suppliers to develop solutions is one of the best ways to address forced labor concerns. Here are a few   best practices that companies can implement to help prevent and address forced labor in their supply chains. 

Conduct a Risk Assessment

Businesses should conduct a risk assessment to identify the potential for forced labor in their supply chains. This can involve reviewing supplier contracts, collecting data from supplier questionnaires, and incorporating the use of trade data which can indicate higher risk products, producers, and countries.

Develop a supplier code of conduct

A supplier code of conduct should be developed that outlines the business’s expectations for suppliers regarding forced labor and other human rights issues. The code of conduct should be communicated to suppliers and incorporated into contracts.

Conduct Due Diligence on Suppliers

 Businesses should conduct due diligence on their suppliers to ensure they comply with the supplier code of conduct. This could involve procedural audits, conducting on-site visits, and other types of monitoring.

Provide Training and Capacity Building

Businesses should provide training and capacity building to their suppliers to help them understand and address forced labor issues. This can include training on labor laws and regulations and best practices for identifying and preventing forced labor.

Implement a Grievance Mechanism

 A grievance mechanism should be established to provide workers with a safe and confidential way to report concerns about forced labor. The mechanism should be communicated to workers and regularly evaluated to ensure effectiveness.

Engage with Stakeholders 

Businesses should engage with stakeholders, including civil society organizations, governments, and other businesses, to share information and collaborate on addressing forced labor issues in their supply chains.

Monitor and Evaluate

Businesses should regularly monitor and evaluate their supply chains to ensure they are effectively addressing forced labor issues. As businesses evolve or change suppliers and as new information about forced labor incidents becomes available, they should periodically review social compliance efforts.

Where We Stand

We understand the unique challenge of monitoring and eliminating forced labor in supply chains. Our CTPAT team provides ongoing guidance in the implementation of these best practices and others. Learn how we can ensure your operations contribute to a more just and equitable global economy.

About Us

The CT Strategies team of former CBP CTPAT Supply Chain Security Specialists (SCSS) and Directors help companies successfully navigate CBP’s CTPAT program. Using insights from over 80 years of combined CBP operational and policy knowledge, we leverage our first-hand CTPAT supply chain security experience and connections to current CBP leadership, so you can save time and money and get the most out of your CTPAT membership.

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