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Safe World Code of Conduct for Field Partners

In Partnering with The Safeworld International Foundation, Safe World Field Partners agree to abide by the following Code of Conduct:

SAFE WORLD* is committed to conducting its transactions and activity in a socially responsible manner.

SAFE WORLD expects the same of its Field Partners.

SAFE WORLD has created this Code of Conduct as a means of enforcing its commitment to deal only with Field Partners who share its commitment to ethical practices.

The provisions of this code constitute minimum and not maximum standards, and this code should not be used to prevent Field Partners from exceeding these standards. Field Partners applying this code are expected to comply with national and other applicable laws and, where the provisions of law and this Base Code address the same subject, to apply that provision which affords the greater protection.

SAFE WORLD recognises that its Field Partners might be based in cultures with different norms and values. SAFE WORLD expects its partners etc to have a natural respect for ethical standards in the context of their own particular culture.

The relationships with Field Partners are based on the principle of fair and honest dealings at all times and in all ways. SAFE WORLD specifically insists that its Field Partners extend the same principle of fair and honest dealings to all others with whom they do business, including employees, sub-contractors and other third parties.

These terms are not subject to negotiation or revision.

In partnering with Safe World, the Field Partner agrees to abide by this code in whole.

SAFE WORLD will not be bound by any handwritten or typed changes to this Agreement not specifically approved by SAFE WORLD in writing.

A) EMPLOYMENT IS FREELY CHOSEN

  1. There is no forced, bonded, indentured or involuntary prison labour.
  2. Workers are not required to lodge "deposits" or their identity papers with their employer and are free to leave their employer after reasonable notice.
  3. Workers are in all cases voluntarily present at work, not at risk of physical harm, fairly compensated, and not exploited in any way. In addition, the following specific guidelines must be followed:

 

B) SEXUAL EXPLOITATION AND ABUSE

In order to prevent sexual exploitation and abuse, the following core principles are incorporated into our code of conduct:

      1. Sexual exploitation and abuse by workers or volunteers constitute acts of gross misconduct and are, therefore, grounds for termination of employment;
      2. Sexual activity with children (persons under the age of 18) is prohibited regardless of the age of majority or age of consent locally. Mistaken belief in the age of a child is not a defence;
      3. Exchange of money, employment, goods, or services for sex, including sexual favours or other forms of humiliating, degrading or exploitative behaviour is prohibited. This includes exchange of assistance that is due to beneficiaries.
      4. Sexual relationships between workers, volunteers and beneficiaries are strongly discouraged since they are based on inherently unequal power dynamics. Such relationships undermine the credibility and integrity of humanitarian aid work.
      5. Where a worker or volunteer develops concerns or suspicions regarding sexual abuse or exploitation by a fellow worker or volunteer, whether in the same agency or not, s/he must report such concerns via established agency reporting mechanisms.
      6. Workers and volunteers are obliged to create and maintain an environment which prevents sexual exploitation and abuse and promotes the implementation of their code of conduct. Managers at all levels have particular responsibilities to support and develop systems which maintain this environment.

 

C) FREEDOM OF ASSOCIATION AND THE RIGHT TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING ARE RESPECTED

  1. Workers, without distinction, have the right to join or form trade unions of their own choosing and to bargain collectively.
  2. The employer adopts an open attitude towards the activities of trade unions and their organisational activities.
  3. Workers representatives are not discriminated against and have access to carry out their representative functions in the workplace.
  4. Where the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining is restricted under law, the employer facilitates, and does not hinder, the development of parallel means for independent and free association and bargaining.

 

C) WORKING CONDITIONS ARE SAFE AND HYGIENIC

  1. Health & Safety
    Field Partners must ensure that they or their suppliers abide by all local laws, directives and regulations relating to health and safety in the workplace or in any other location other than the workplace where production or work is undertaken and that they implement any amendments to these laws, directives or regulations.
  2. A safe and hygienic working environment shall be provided, bearing in mind the prevailing knowledge of the industry and of any specific hazards. Adequate steps shall be taken to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, Field Partnerd with, or occurring in the course of work, by minimising, so far as is reasonably practicable, the causes of hazards inherent in the working environment.
  3. Access to clean toilet facilities and to potable water, and, if appropriate, sanitary facilities for food storage shall be provided.
  4. Accommodation, where provided, shall be clean, safe, and meet the basic needs of the workers.

 

D) CHILD LABOUR SHALL NOT BE USED

  1. The exploitation and / or use of child labor or any other vulnerable group is totally unacceptable to SAFE WORLD and will not be tolerated.
  2. All applicable local laws must be complied with regarding the minimum age of workers. Workers can be no less than fourteen years of age and not younger than the compulsory age to be in school in the country where the work is to be performed.
  3. Children and young persons under 18 shall not be employed at night or in hazardous conditions.
  4. These policies and procedures shall conform to the provisions of the relevant ILO standards. (International Labour Standards).

 

E) LIVING WAGES ARE PAID

  1. Wages and benefits paid for a standard working week meet, at a minimum, national legal standards or industry benchmark standards, whichever is higher.
  2. All workers shall be provided with written and understandable Information about their employment conditions in respect to wages before they enter employment and about the particulars of their wages for the pay period concerned each time that they are paid.
  3. Deductions from wages as a disciplinary measure shall not be permitted nor shall any deductions from wages not provided for by national law be permitted without the expressed permission of the worker concerned. All disciplinary measures should be recorded.

 

F) WORKING HOURS ARE NOT EXCESSIVE

  1. Working hours comply with national laws and benchmark industry standards, whichever affords greater protection.
  2. In any event, workers shall not on a regular basis be required to work in excess of 48 hours per week and shall be provided with at least one day off for every 7 day period on average. Overtime shall be voluntary, shall not exceed 12 hours per week, shall not be demanded on a regular basis and shall always be compensated at a premium rate.

 

G) NO DISCRIMINATION IS PRACTISED

  1. SAFE WORLD insists its Field Partners treat everyone fairly when selecting and dealing with their employees, volunteers, members and beneficiaries and should not treat any person less favourably because of their race, colour, religion, sexuality, age, gender, nationality or disability*.
  2. There is no discrimination in hiring, compensation, access to training, promotion, termination or retirement based on race, caste, national origin, religion, age, disability, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, union membership or political affiliation*.
    * Except where an NGO has objectives which are legitimately served and advanced through positive discrimination towards socially or economically disadvantaged women.

 

H) REGULAR EMPLOYMENT IS PROVIDED

  1. To every extent possible work performed must be on the basis of recognised employment relationship established through national law and practice.
  2. Obligations to employees under labour or social security laws and regulations arising from the regular employment relationship shall not be avoided through the use of labour-only contracting, sub- contracting, or home-working arrangements, or through apprenticeship schemes where there is no real intent to impart skills or provide regular employment, nor shall any such obligations be avoided through the excessive use of fixed-term contracts of employment.

 

J) NO HARSH OR INHUMANE TREATMENT IS ALLOWED

  1. Workers and volunteers shall be treated with dignity and respect. Physical abuse or discipline, corporal punishment, the threat of physical abuse, sexual or other harassment and verbal abuse or other forms of intimidation shall be prohibited.

 

K) HUMAN RIGHTS

  1. Products and materials shall not be manufactured or produced in any country where the human rights environment would prevent, as determined by SAFE WORLD in its sole discretion, the conduct of business activities in a manner that is consistent with this Code of Conduct.

 

L) LEGAL SYSTEM

  1. Products and materials shall not be manufactured or produced in any country where the local legal system would prevent SAFE WORLD, as determined in its sole discretion, from adequately protecting its name, trademarks, images, or other interests or from implementing any provision of this Code.

 

M) ENVIRONMENTAL

SAFE WORLD insists that its Field Partners:

  • Have an effective environmental policy, to endeavour always to achieve this policy using the best available techniques, to implement the policy at all levels throughout the organisation and to include a commitment to continual improvement in environmental performance and waste reduction.
  • Adhere to all environmental legislation, regulations and all local laws to facilitate the protection of the environment.
  • Identify a person within its organisation who has responsibility for environmental compliance issues and to be able to demonstrate that responsible personnel are adequately trained in environmental matters.

 

N) REPRESENTATION AND LICENSING

  • Field Partners shall not represent SAFE WORLD in any communications.
  • Field Partners may not use the SAFE WORLD logo except with the express permission of SAFE WORLD in each instance where the SAFE WORLD logo is used.

 

P) MONITORING

SAFE WORLD insists that Field Partners actively audit and monitor their day to day management process to ensure compliance with this Code of Conduct.

Q) DEVELOPMENT OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT

SAFE WORLD will review this Code of Conduct on a regular basis and will introduce revisions where necessary.

Field Partners will be presented with, and will need to agree to, any future revisions of this Code of Conduct as a condition of continuing as partners.

R) APPLICATION

This Code of Conduct shall apply to all Field Partners.

Throughout this Code, use of the term Field Partner signifies the party agreeing to this Code of Conduct.

It shall apply to the Field Partner, as well as its third party contractors, subcontractors, vendors, manufacturers, sublicensees, and any related entities throughout the world, which produce or sell products or materials incorporated in products supplied to the Field Partner.

Upon request, every Field Partner shall promptly provide SAFE WORLD with the following:

Information concerning each such facility where products supplied are made:

      1. the name, address, telephone number and facsimile number of the facility;
      2. the name, address, telephone number and facsimile number of the owner(s) of the facility;
      3. the name and job title of a contact person at the facility;
      4. a detailed description of the type and quantity of all products made, assembled, or processed, in whole or in part, at the facility;
      5. a summary description of the supplier’s relationship to the owners and/or operators of the facility (e.g., company owned, contractual, etc.); and
      6. any other information SAFE WORLD’s external monitor deems necessary to effectively monitor and verify compliance with this Code.

 

(ii) Confidentiality

Any information requested or provided in paragraph R) above will be treated as confidential by SAFE WORLD and SAFE WORLD’s external monitor. Said information will not be disclosed to other third parties unless SAFE WORLD is required to do so by law or compelled to do so through legal process. Further, said information will be used solely to monitor, ensure and improve compliance with this Code of Conduct.

S)  COMMUNICATION AND NOTIFICATION

Field Partners must ensure that the management staff has and understood the requirements of this Code and effectively communicates the terms of this Code to its workers and volunteers.

*The Safeworld International Foundation