Ottawa has promised new legislation to “strengthen” the forced labour import ban—which prohibits the importation into Canada of goods made with forced labour—and to “eradicate” forced labour from Canadian supply chains. We recently made recommendations for this legislation in a submission to the government. It draws on legal analysis we sought out to identify options for better enforcement of the import ban.
We’re calling for several reforms to enforcement of the ban, including that the government:
- publicly report details of the goods it classifies as products of forced labour, including the manufacturer’s name;
- make amendments to allow civil society actors to formally request classification of goods before or after they’re imported; and
- consult regularly with a civil society advisory body on how to best enforce the ban with a view to protecting workers’ rights.
We also recommend that Canada adopt a mandatory human rights and environmental due diligence law without delay, which would ensure that abused workers can seek justice against the companies at the top of supply and profit chains.