Modern slavery is a crime and a violation of fundamental human rights. It takes various forms, such as slavery, servitude, forced and compulsory labour and human trafficking, all of which have in common the deprivation of a person’s liberty by another in order to exploit them for personal or commercial gain.

We are committed to improving our practices to combat slavery and human trafficking.

This statement is made pursuant to section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes Arts University Bournemouth’s slavery and human trafficking statement for the financial year ending 31 July 2018.

Our Structure

Arts University Bournemouth (AUB) is a specialist institution in the UK higher education sector delivering in the areas of art, design, media and performance.  We are dedicated to turning individuals’ creativity into careers.  We currently have more than 3,500 students attending full time, part time and short courses at our compact campus in Wallisdown near the centre of Bournemouth.

The University comprises of four schools: the School of Art, Design and Architecture, the School of Media & Performance, the Postgraduate School and the School for Preparation for HE;  in addition it delivers an extensive range of  Short Courses, all of which provide learning and progression opportunities for students of all ages.  We employ over 700 full time and part time staff.  The Academic Schools are supported by a range of professional services to include finance, human resources, registry, quality, campus services, marketing and others.

The University is an exempt charity regulated by the Office for Students (OfS).  It has two subsidiaries AUB Enterprises Limited and AUB Services Limited; and an associated charitable company The Arts University Bournemouth Charitable Foundation.  Its annual consolidated turnover is in the region of £45 million (2018/19) with income primarily generated in the UK.

Our polices on slavery and human trafficking

In keeping with our commitment to act with integrity in all our business dealings, many of our existing policies govern how the University conducts its business activities, to include sustainable, ethical, economic and social considerations in its purchase of goods and services and the employment of staff.

Relevant policies include:

  • Purchasing Policy;
  • Recruitment Policy;
  • Dignity at Work Policy;
  • Disciplinary Procedure; and
  • Whistleblowing (Public Interest and Disclosure) Policy.

The University is planning to raise student and staff awareness by having Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking as a standing item on the Environment Committee which considers the impact of a wide range of University activities.

Employment Practices

AUB mitigates the risk of modern slavery and human trafficking within its own staff community by following fair HR recruitment and selection policies and procedures.  Checks are carried out to ensure that staff recruited are legally able to work in the UK and staff involved in undertaking the recruitment process are trained in the online recruitment system and related scoring. In addition, the University’s pay rates are determined in line with UCEA national awards and AUB is working with contractors it uses so that they apply the Living Wage.

Where recruitment agencies are used, AUB requires that such agencies comply with all UK legislation relating to the employment rights and welfare of candidates.

Our supply chains

The supply chain to AUB is diverse and we buy a wide range of goods and services to support the effective running of the university e.g. construction and estates services, furniture and stationery, electronics (computers, audio visual etc.), travel services, books and printing, security services, waste and recycling services.  The goods and services are procured from suppliers across the world and our 1st tier suppliers range from locally based micro businesses though to large multi-national/global companies.  The vast majority of our purchases are from suppliers based within the UK.

AUB purchases goods and services through a number of purchasing consortia, including but not limited to Southern Universities Purchasing Consortium (SUPC), Crown Commercial Service (CCS), Crescent Purchasing Consortia (CPC), and The Energy Consortium (TEC).  The University is an associate member of SUPC which in turn is a member of Procurement England Limited (PEL) which has published a shared Sustainability Policy to which all PEL member consortia are committed, and the SUPC has itself published its own Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement to demonstrate its work in relation to modern slavery and human trafficking.

While the risks of modern slavery in our direct activities is likely to be low, we recognise that there are risks through the goods and services that we procure linked to supply chains around the world.

Due diligence processes on slavery and human trafficking

AUB chooses its business partners, suppliers and contractors with great care and there are already systems in place to:

  • Identify and assess potential risk areas in our supply chain;
  • Monitor potential risk areas in our supply chains;
  • Mitigate against the risk of slavery and human trafficking occurring through background checks;
  • Protect whistle blowers and report unethical conduct;
  • Build relationships with recognised purchasing consortia which have suitable anti-slavery and human trafficking policies and processes; and
  • Include contract clauses which do not tolerate slavery and human trafficking.

Supplier adherence to our values

The University does not tolerate slavery and human trafficking of any kind.  Its tendering and contracting processes ask due diligence questions of suppliers in respect of Ethics and the Modern Slavery Act and our standard terms and conditions have clauses covering modern slavery and human trafficking.  AUB expects its 1st Tier Suppliers to ensure their goods, materials and labour related supply chains are fully compliant with the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and that they are transparent, accountable and auditable.


The AUB already has dedicated officers who are aware of the requirements of the Modern Slavery Act and the principles of human rights within:

  • Procurement and Finance; and
  • Human Resources.

We recognise the need to increase organisational awareness of the obligations under the Act and therefore in developing a Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Policy, we will also be developing a general programme of awareness raising and learning and development in this regard.

Our effectiveness in combating slavery and human trafficking

We will monitor, record and benchmark the extent to which activities may be deemed to be in contravention of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 either in the employment of staff or the procurement of goods and services from suppliers.  The AUB will work tirelessly to minimise the occurrence of incidents of slavery and human trafficking and focus its efforts on the activities which are deemed to be higher risk.

Michael Clarke

Chair of the Audit & Risk Committee