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MEDIA RELEASE: National Roundtable Advances Movement to End Modern Slavery

advocacy, Australia, government, IJM Australia, Modern Slavery Act, slavery

Written by IJM
Posted on 22 August 2018 under Media Releases, Recent posts, Stories of system change.

22 August 2018

International Justice Mission (IJM) Australia was honoured to attend the Australian Government’s National Roundtable on Human Trafficking and Slavery and is hopeful that such discussions will strengthen Australia’s response to modern slavery.

The meeting, held in Canberra last Thursday, brought together representatives from key government agencies, non-government organisations, and industry bodies, providing a forum for consultation between vital stakeholders. The Hon Julie Bishop MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs, was among four ministers in attendance. Caroly Houmes, IJM Australia’s Chief Executive, was invited to observe the Roundtable discussions.

“The conversation was proactive and collaborative on how to effectively combat slavery both in our country as well as in our region,” says Ms Houmes. “It is evidence that the landscape has changed dramatically over the last couple of years; human trafficking no longer has a ‘hidden’ nature.”

A much-anticipated topic of the event was the federal Modern Slavery Bill. The Senate Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee is due to present a report on the Bill this Friday, which is likely to make recommendations on key provisions such as whether non-compliance should result in penalties for businesses, and whether a list of entities required to report will be compiled and published by the government.

Following this report IJM Australia hopes to see the successful passage of the Bill before the end of the year. We look forward to seeing Australian businesses respond to this opportunity to establish themselves as global leaders in supply chain transparency and anti-exploitation practices.

IJM Australia believes that both government and business have important roles to play in securely placing Australia at the forefront of the global efforts to protect the most vulnerable from exploitation.

“The government’s new modern slavery laws, inviting submissions from both the private sector and civil society – including International Justice Mission – is not just a step, but a leap forward,” says Ms Houmes.


About the Roundtable
The Roundtable was first convened in 2008 and continues to be an important mechanism for strengthening Australia’s dialogue around and responses to human trafficking and slavery.

Ministers present for the event included:
• Hon Julie Bishop MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs
• Hon Alex Hawke MP, Assistant Minister for Home Affairs
• Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, Minister for Jobs and Innovation
• Hon Dan Tehan MP, Minister for Social Services

About International Justice Mission
IJM is a global organisation that protects the poor from violence by partnering with local authorities to rescue victims, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors, and strengthen justice systems. More information available at

Media enquiries
Bianca Bryson
Director of Marketing & Communications, IJM Australia | 1300 045 669

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Who is IJM?

International Justice Mission is a global organisation that protects the poor from violence throughout the developing world. IJM partners with local authorities to rescue victims of violence, bring criminals to justice, restore survivors, and strengthen justice systems.

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