McGuireWoods London office managing partner Dan Peyton is quoted in a March 11 HR magazine story about the importance of companies employing diverse workforces and combating human trafficking if they hope to win public contracts.
The story was published the same day the UK government proposed new criteria for awarding public contracts. The government is asking companies to improve their performance in four areas: diversity, training to boost staff development, environmental sustainability and reducing “modern slavery,” and cybersecurity risks in their supply chains.
Peyton, a leading UK labor and employment lawyer, said HR professionals should welcome the initiative.
“The government’s approach does not yet signal a change in the law in areas like modern slavery, where more effective penalties for non-compliance would be likely to meet broad approval. Nor does it require positive discrimination by employers, which might prove more divisive,” he said. “Instead this requires employers to ensure that they are proactive in adhering to the spirit, as well as the letter, of laws that deal with morally-sensitive issues in order to obtain commercial benefits.”