Modern Slavery Statement


This statement is made pursuant to section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015. It constitutes Cancer Research UK’s (CRUK) slavery and human trafficking statement for the financial year ended 31 March 2019. Of CRUK’s wholly-owned subsidiaries, this statement covers the activities of Cancer Research UK Trading Limited and Cancer Research Technology Limited, which procure goods and services from and form part of CRUK’s supply chain.

Our Organisation

CRUK is the world’s largest cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research. We rely on the generosity of the public to fund this research through donations, buying goods in our shops or online and taking part in a wide range of fundraising events.

We have around 4,000 staff and over 40,000 volunteers, most of whom are based in the United Kingdom. Our staff are largely directly employed and are generally not in any category which is seen to be vulnerable to modern slavery in this country, so our main focus is to ensure there are policies and due diligence procedures in place for our suppliers.

Our Supply Chain

CRUK is committed to continuously improving its practices to identify and eliminate any slavery and human trafficking in its business and supply chains, and to acting ethically and with integrity in all its business relationships.

CRUK uses a wide range of suppliers who supply goods for sale, provide services at events and support our operations.


CRUK has a number of policies which underpin our approach to tackling the risk of modern slavery in our supply chain. These include:

  • Working with Suppliers and Partners Policy which sets out internal requirements for buying goods and services;
  • Responsible Procurement Policy covering issues of human rights, child and forced labour and modern slavery; and
  • Whistleblowing Policy which encourages staff and volunteers to report concerns including any related to modern slavery/trafficking and child or forced labour.

Due Diligence

We continue to monitor suppliers we believe present high modern slavery risks in our supply chain. This includes those who support the procurement of goods and materials for our fundraising and marketing activities and for sale in our network of charity shops, particularly where those goods and materials are acquired from suppliers in high risk countries.

All suppliers which we class as high risk must:

  • complete our Modern Slavery Act Due Diligence Questionnaire which covers their governance, policies, training and supply chain management processes; and
  • on an annual basis and prior to sourcing, provide full detail of the supply chains they are proposing to commission goods from on behalf of CRUK.

CRUK is a member of both the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (SEDEX) and the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI). These are membership schemes which support companies to assess and map risks in their supply chains. The SEDEX and BSCI platforms allow CRUK to access audited information uploaded by factories used by our suppliers, giving us a better insight into their supply chains.

For factories in the supply chains of high risk suppliers we request that the operators of those factories:

  • are members of either SEDEX or BSCI; and
  • provide independent ethical audits through either SEDEX, BSCI or Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (a certification programme which maintains similar standards to SEDEX and BSCI).

A CRUK team is responsible for assessing the information submitted by suppliers and factory operators. Should a supplier or factory fail to provide the information requested or to meet CRUK’s expectations, CRUK will take appropriate action. For example, this may include not entering into a relationship or suspending/terminating our relationship with a supplier or asking a supplier not to procure goods from a particular factory.


During the year, we have continued to provide advice and guidance to those teams who have direct responsibility for relevant supply chains. Our Procurement team and some of our fundraising teams have participated in modern slavery training delivered by the Ethical Trading Initiative for CRUK. We also maintain a Modern Slavery Act Guidance document which is available to staff through CRUK’s intranet.

Looking Ahead

Over the course of the next financial year we will continue to enhance our procedures to help us identify, prevent and mitigate any risks of modern slavery or human trafficking in relation to new and existing suppliers and in relation to our own operations.


This statement has been formally approved by the Trustees of Cancer Research UK and the Directors of Cancer Research UK Trading Limited and signed on their behalf.

Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz 
Cancer Research UK