Responsible supply chains end slavery

Posted on December 12, 2011

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Slavery. A relic that doesn’t exist in today’s world, right?

Sadly, no. Slavery, also known as human trafficking, is alive and well. And expectations for business to eradicate this horrific practice are rising.

Experts estimate as many as 27 million people are enslaved by forced labor, more than during the transatlantic slave trade. Human trafficking cases occur in all 50 of the United States — affecting hundreds of thousands of people in the U.S. alone.

Human trafficking thrives because it makes money. The International Labour Organisation (ILO) estimates that slave labor generates profits of US$32 billion each year.

As businesses awaken to the terrible reality of modern-day slavery, more companies are taking action to end it. It goes beyond the obvious moral obligation. These companies recognize that where slavery exists, so do corruption, greed and a poisoned supply chain.

Tellabs has always held integrity as a core value. Our code of conduct helps ensure that we treat all people with respect. But it doesn’t directly address slavery in the supply chain.

To clarify our position, and in response to the recent California Transparency in Supply Chains Act (California SB 657), Tellabs recently released a Supply Chain Anti-Slavery Policy. It describes some of our anti-slavery practices with key suppliers.

If you’re interested in learning more about the issue, groups such as Polaris Project and End Human Trafficking Now  offer helpful resources.

This post also appeared today on Tellabs Blog.