How businesses consider human rights has gained greater prominence in recent years. It features regularly in current political discourse about public trust in business behaviour and in investors’ demand for increased transparency of Environmental Social and Governance performance. The two are related – lack of disclosure is a gap in the trust narrative.
Our Human Rights Policy (PDF 90 KB opens in new window) demonstrates our commitment to protecting the human rights of our employees and those working on our behalf in our supply chain.
We convened a cross-company working group to draft the policy statement, and identify and assess human rights risks and potential impacts on our employees, customers, suppliers and communities. This group identified our salient human rights issues as access to clean water, data protection and privacy, health and safety, and modern slavery.
As part of our approach to protecting human rights and preventing modern slavery we carried out an internal risk mapping process across our entire supply chain. We initially identified four key areas of our supply chain where we believe the greatest potential risk of modern slavery non-compliance lies. During 2019/20 we have responded to evidence that the construction sector is one of the emerging risk areas where modern slavery is on the rise. This is relevant to us given the large amount of construction and maintenance based activity we undertake every day, particularly where there are sub-contractors involved. We have therefore included construction as one of our higher risk areas. Our progress over the last 12 months can be found in our Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement for 2020 (PDF 1,107 KB opens in a new window).
To date, we have not identified any human rights abuses within our own operations nor our supply chain and so no remediation actions have been required. However, as we cannot guarantee that they aren’t present in some form, we’ve mapped our human rights risks against our corporate risk register and manage them within this framework. In addition, our supply chain modern slavery risk management plan is detailed in the Statement.
Previous Slavery and Human Trafficking Statements:
- 2019 Slavery and Human Trafficking statement (PDF 361 KB opens in a new window)
- 2018 Slavery and Human Trafficking statement (PDF 301KB opens in a new window)
- 2017 Slavery and Human Trafficking statement (PDF 233KB opens in new window)
- 2016 Slavery and Human Trafficking statement (PDF 346KB opens in new window)