Everyone has the right to just and favourable conditions of work.
Misleading or false recruitment advertising and other abusive hiring practices can lead to debt bondage, isolation, surveillance, withholding of money and threats of violence and denunciation to authorities, all indicators of modern slavery. Businesses can ensure safe recruitment practices by conducting due diligence on recruitment agencies they intend to use, as well as on businesses in their supply chain.
Recruitment agencies can often facilitate the movement of workers looking for job opportunities outside of their home country. Recruitment agencies are especially sought after in sectors where there is seasonal demand, often attracting migrant workers and those who may not speak a common language. Migrant workers regularly travel great distances and may not have a support network in the foreign country, are at the greatest risk of exploitative and abusive hiring practices. For example, migrant workers often rely on recruitment agencies to handle complex visa procedures and will submit personal identity documents to gain employment. Workers who flee exploitative work arrangements without access to their identity documents are at risk of becoming undocumented and left stranded without accommodation and money.
Recruitment agencies will also often charge a fee for the services provided. Sometimes this will represent a disproportionately high percentage of the salary advertised. In these circumstances, there is a risk that the employee will be subject to unauthorised deductions or debt bondage.
Businesses can ensure safe recruitment practices by conducting due diligence on recruitment agencies they use in the market, and ensure they undertake due diligence to ensure other businesses in its supply chain also have safe recruitment practices. Businesses in low-skilled or seasonal industries need to take extra care to ensure legitimate recruitment agencies are used, given the vulnerability of potential workers in these sectors.