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Modern slavery and human trafficking statement

At Plymouth Marjon University we place our values at the heart of everything we do. This Statement reflects the commitment to recognising Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes our Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy for the financial year 2022/23.

Modern Slavery is a crime and a violation of fundamental human rights. It exists in several ways to deprive one person’s rights in order to exploit them for personal or commercial gain.  The following examples are not exhaustive but typically include slavery, forced and coerced labour, servitude and human trafficking.

Plymouth Marjon University is a caring and compassionate institute which is always student centred. Our values of Humanity, Independence, Curiosity and Ambition enable us to make a positive difference to people’s lives and help them to achieve their potential.  Our church heritage has shaped our values and underpins our ethos of inclusivity and humanity, where everyone matters.  This is at the core of our 180-year existence.

Our University Structure, as an independent Higher Education Corporation, is regulated by the Office for Students and gives us exempt charity status in accordance with the Charities Act 2011.  Our charitable objectives focus on education and research and as a charity we are required to operate for public benefit.


Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy

In order to deliver our charitable objectives, the University works closely with a broad and varied supply chain of approximately 200 suppliers and a number and variety of key partners.

The University categorises suppliers against the standard Higher Education Procurement category codes.  This approach enables the University to target the areas of highest risk of potential for slavery and human trafficking which includes, but is not limited to Catering Supplies & Services, Janitorial & Domestic Supplies/Services, Estates & Buildings and Travel & Transport (including hospitality).

The University continues to modernise Procurement practices.  This will result in a wide review of the following areas to link ethical and sustainability polices to the procurement practices:

  • Tendering practices, procurement documents to prohibit slavery and human trafficking, exploring unusually low tender submissions. This applies to sub-contractors for larger value and particular types of procurement activity.
  • Terms and Conditions (suppliers and partnerships).
  • Approval processes for accepting suppliers and agreeing new partnerships.
  • Revised Financial Regulations and Contract Standing Orders.
  • Higher Education Procurement Association / British University Finance Directors Group E-learning for all relevant staff:
  • Guide to Modern Slavery
  • Protecting Human Rights in the Supply Chain
  • The Bribery Act

In addition, we will use accredited procurement frameworks such as the Southern University Purchasing Consortia to support ethical purchase and procurement of goods, works and services.

The University also completes background document checks into employees’ entitlement to work in the UK. These checks take place prior to the interview stage.

The Chief Operating Officer & Finance Director will also be implementing regular Finance briefings open to all staff to attend. Procurement will feature in these briefings to help raise awareness. Higher Education Procurement Association (HEPA) and the British Universities Finance Directors Group (BUFDG) materials will also be circulated to University staff and partners.

Furthermore, we also include exclusions within our Ethical Investment Policy to avoid investments that could give rise to modern slavery, exploitation and trafficking.

Professor Claire Taylor, Vice- Chancellor and Graham Raikes, MBE, Chair of Board of Governors.

Date:  31 July 2023