Fair & Ethical Trade – Cotton

As cotton is not indigenous to the UK, trading fairly and ethically with suppliers where it is grown is very important so we have devoted a lot of time to ensuring that the tea towels that we buy have been produced in an environmentally and ethically sound manner.We purchase all of our cotton products from carefully chosen suppliers in India and we do not dictate the price we pay for the products, we accept prices offered so long as they are commercially viable.

1. Employment is freely chosen

1.1. There is no forced, bonded or involuntary prison labour.

1.2. Workers are free to leave their employer after reasonable notice.

2. Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining is respected to the extent permitted by local law.

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.

3. Working conditions are safe and hygienic

3.1. 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 are taken to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, associated with, or occurring in the course of work, and, so far as is reasonably practicable, the causes of hazards inherent in the working environment are minimised.

3.2. Workers receive appropriate health and safety training, and such training is repeated for new or reassigned workers.

3.3. Accommodation, where provided, is clean, safe, and meets the basic needs of the workers.

3.4. The supplier assigns responsibility for health and safety to a senior management representative.

4. Child labour is not used

4.1. There is no use of child labour.

4.2. Young persons under 18 are not employed at night or in hazardous conditions.

5. Living wages are paid

5.1. Wages and benefits paid for a standard working week meet national legal standards.

5.2. All workers are 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.

5.3. Deductions from wages as a disciplinary measure is not permitted nor any deductions from wages not provided for by national law is permitted without the expressed permission for the worker concerned. All disciplinary measures are recorded.

6. Working hours are not excessive

Working hours comply with national laws and known benchmark industry standards.

7. No discrimination is practised

There is no discrimination in hiring, compensation, access to training, promotion, termination or retirement based on race, caste, national origin, religion, disability, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, union membership or political affiliation.

8. No harsh or inhumane treatment is allowed

Physical abuse or discipline, the threat of physical abuse, sexual or other harassment
and verbal abuse or other forms of intimidation are prohibited.

9. No bribery or corruption is permitted

No bribes are paid or accepted to give or receive business.

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