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Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement for the Financial Year Ending 31 December 2021

The Institute of Physics (IOP) and its group companies are committed to doing all we reasonably can to combat all forms of slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains. This statement sets out how the entire IOP group has approached these issues during this financial year and how we will continue to do so in the next.

Our Group Status, Structure and Activities

The IOP is a charity registered in England and Wales, and in Scotland, and is incorporated by Royal Charter. We are the professional body and learned society for physics in the United Kingdom and Ireland, inspiring people to develop their knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of physics.

The objective of the IOP, as stated in our Royal Charter, is to promote the advancement and dissemination of knowledge and education in the science of physics, pure and applied, for the benefit of the public and the members of the IOP.

We work with a range of partners to support and develop the teaching of physics in schools; we encourage innovation, growth and productivity in business including addressing significant skills shortages; and we provide evidence-based advice and support to governments across the UK and in Ireland.

Our members come from across the physics community whether in industry, academia, the classroom, technician roles or in training programmes as an apprentice or a student. However, our reach goes well beyond our membership to all who have an interest in physics and the contribution it makes to our culture, our society and the economy.

The IOP group of companies is made up of subsidiaries registered in England and Wales, the United States of America, the People’s Republic of China, India and the Russian Federation and of offices in various other countries.

The largest subsidiary, IOP Publishing Limited, is a world leader in scientific communications publishing journals, ebooks, magazines and websites globally. The other subsidiaries support the activities of IOP and/or IOP Publishing Limited in the UK and globally.

Our Group’s Supply Chain

The IOP group of companies has a diverse supply chain, and we have assessed the risk of slavery occurring across the various sectors. We have highlighted suppliers of IT, print and editorial services, office equipment, catering services, building services, temporary recruitment services, and accommodation and venue facilities as being those which could be seen to be higher risk activities.

These suppliers are located across the globe, with some located in countries which have a high estimated prevalence of modern slavery as measured by the Global Slavery Index 2018, such as India, Tanzania and Ukraine.

Our Approach and Policies on Slavery and Human Trafficking

During 2021, we have continued activities on a group-wide basis to identify and mitigate the risk of slavery or human trafficking occurring in the IOP group’s supply chains. These have included:

  • continuing to identify and assess potential risk areas in our supply chains, in particular for those suppliers in countries with a high estimated prevalence of modern slavery
  • carrying out due diligence checks on higher risk suppliers, such as requesting evidence of their own policies and procedures
  • introducing appropriate contractual obligations into contracts with relevant suppliers
  • providing our Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy to our suppliers and obtaining their agreement to comply by it
  • briefing key employees on how to identify risks of slavery in our supply chains and how to escalate them internally
  • where possible, visits to key suppliers to witness working conditions first hand
  • obtaining confirmation from key employees and suppliers that no instances of modern slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains have been observed either during visits or otherwise
  • ensuring employees are aware how to raise any suspected instances of slavery
  • undertaking an internal audit of current contracts to assess whether appropriate contractual obligations are included

We confirm our commitment to prohibiting modern slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains and in any part of our businesses. Our Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy reflects our commitment to acting ethically and with integrity in all of our business relationships and to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to prohibit slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains and business.

Supplier Adherence to Our Values

We have a zero-tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking. To ensure that those companies in our supply chains comply with these values, we require that all relevant suppliers are issued with, and agree to comply with, our Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy and/or that appropriate obligations are included in our contracts with them.

These obligations will allow us to secure assurances that those suppliers have appropriate measures in place in relation to their own business and supply chains and commit to complying with all relevant legislation and codes of practice.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

Our KPIs are:

1. for the year ending 31 December 2022, 100% of senior staff in the IOP group with roles managing suppliers in the higher risk areas we have identified will have confirmed that either:

(a) they have not discovered, nor been made aware of, any issues affecting their suppliers which might constitute modern slavery; or

(b) any potential instances of modern slavery have been reported in accordance with our processes;

2. during 2021 and 2022, at least 85% of employed staff in the IOP group will have completed training on anti-slavery and human trafficking, either e-learning or in-person, as appropriate, including on relevant indicators of forced labour;

3. during 2022 we shall carry out a random check of 5% of our supply contracts signed in the past 12 months to verify if appropriate contractual obligations have been included with relevant suppliers; and

4. during 2022 we shall undertake at least three site visits to key suppliers to witness working conditions first hand.

These indicators will be reviewed annually.

Continuing Our Approach in 2022

In order to further ensure that there is no slavery and human trafficking in our supply chains, we intend to take the following further steps in the forthcoming financial year:

  • refresh training on anti-slavery and human trafficking to employees
  • monitor compliance with our policy by all relevant suppliers and all staff
  • undertake site visits to some of our key suppliers

This statement is made pursuant to section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes the IOP group’s Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement for the financial year ending 31 December 2021.

Professor Sheila Rowan CBE
The Institute of Physics

Professor Paul Hardaker
Chief Executive Officer
The Institute of Physics

The above statement was approved by the IOP Council of Trustees on 19 May 2022. It has been endorsed by the IOP Executive Board and by the IOP Publishing Limited Executive Board.

Download the DocuSigned statement (PDF, 331KB)