Labour and Co-operative councillors have pledged to ensure none of the money they spend on procuring goods and services inadvertently ends up supporting exploitation or trafficking.
Councillors from Islington, Oxford, Bristol, Lambeth, Waltham Forest and Stevenage councils will meet later today to sign the Charter Against Modern Slavery.
The charter commits the councils to rooting out exploitation in their supply chains, going beyond the statutory duties under the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
Cllr Andy Hull, signing on behalf of the London Borough of Islington, said: ‘Tackling the scourge of modern slavery ought to be a priority for everyone in the UK today. That’s why I am proud to sign this charter and I sincerely hope that many other councillors across the country will too. That way, local government as a whole can use its significant purchasing power to take on those who would treat their fellow human beings as modern slaves.’
At the event, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn is expected to say: 'As a country we must do more to tackle modern slavery, which blights thousands of lives every year, and councils can play a vital role in ensuring their supply chains are ethical.
'I am proud that Islington is helping to lead the way and I hope more local authorities will sign up to help us end this injustice.'