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Human Rights Policy


INTRODUCTION

Our Human Rights Policy is applicable to all Thornton & Ross, NextGen & Natures Aid employees, and to temporary workers, contractors, agents and subsidiaries acting for, or on behalf of, the Company (“associated persons”) within the UK and overseas.  

We are committed to the highest standards of ethical and sustainable business practices. This means we take account of our social, economic and environmental impact. The STADA (UK) Executive Committee (SEC) is committed to implementing effective measures to continually improve our Corporate Social Responsibility.  


Equality & Diversity

We are committed to ensuring that, as far as is reasonably practicable, the way we provide services to the public and the way we treat our employees reflects their individual needs and does not unlawfully discriminate against individuals or groups on any grounds.  


Privacy

Privacy or Data Protection Law governs how Personal Information is handled. Documentation referenced in this policy should be stored in the employee’s personal file unless otherwise stated.
Some types of Personal Information are especially sensitive and must only be used for very specific purposes. The activity covered by this policy handles Sensitive Personal Information; this information must only be used as outlined in Thornton & Ross, NextGen & Natures Aid Policies and Processes.


HUMAN RIGHTS

We believe governments are responsible for defining and enforcing a legal human rights framework that accords with international laws and agreements, such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. However, as part of a multinational organisation with global outreach, we recognise that we have a role to play in upholding human rights and in addressing adverse human rights impacts where we are in a position to influence.  


We support the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. We are committed to upholding the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the core labour standards set out by the International Labour Organisation. We support the transparency requirements of the UK’s Modern Slavery Act and other similar legislation.  


As a company, we can only do so much to resolve and promote human rights; a partnership approach, working with others who have the mandate, competence, and capacity to facilitate change is essential. However, where we have direct responsibilities, we are guided by our own values and ethics, to use our influence appropriately.


As an employer we are:  
• Committed to providing a fair salary and good conditions of employment.
• Committed to providing a healthy, safe, and secure workplace for all employees and contractors.
• Committed to exercising high standards of integrity in dealing with and protecting Personally Identifiable Information (PII) of employees.
• Opposed to discrimination at work and committed to promoting diversity & inclusion. • Committed to promoting the personal development and dignity of every individual employee. • Respectful of the right of employees to join an independent trade union, the right to collectively bargain, and the freedom of association.
• Opposed to all forms of slavery and exploitative child labour.


We strive to conduct business with third-party suppliers, business partners and collaborators who share our commitment to high ethical standards and operate in a responsible and ethical manner towards their workers – both directly and indirectly employed - and their own suppliers.


We respect the law and behave with honesty and integrity in all aspects of public life and demonstrate responsible leadership. As a member of a local community, we respect and promote the rights of all those within our sphere of influence in our community.


UNDERSTANDING LABOUR RIGHTS

Here we provide more detail on the labour rights that we have adopted to promote decent working conditions throughout Thornton & Ross, NextGen & Natures Aid. These standards represent a minimum and do not preclude us from adopting higher standards


No use of child labour

We do not employ workers who are younger than 18 years of age. Robust age verification checks are in place throughout our recruitment process to ensure this expectation is met.  
References: ILO Minimum Age Convention C138, ILO Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention C182 


No use of forced labour

All work is conducted on a voluntary basis, not under threat of any kind. Prison, indentured, bonded or otherwise involuntary labour is strictly prohibited. Workers are not required to lodge original identification papers or monetary deposits on starting work. Workers are able to leave employment after reasonable notice, the period of which is agreed upon engagement, and receive all owed salary.  
References: ILO Forced Labour Convention C29, ILO Abolition of Forced Labour Convention C105


A safe and healthy workplace is provided

All workers are provided with clean and safe conditions across our sites. Workers have access to clean toilet & shower facilities, drinkable water, and hygienic food storage. Adequate steps to prevent accidents and injury arising out of, associated with, or occurring during work, have been taken by minimising the causes of occupational hazards. In the event of an occupational accident or incident, emergency first aid is provided to workers.  
Health and safety information and training is provided to workers, so they are able to understand the hazards, risks and control measures associated with their job. At least one senior management representative is assigned responsibility for health and safety and a risk-based management system is operational clearly defined accountabilities for maintaining it.  
References: ILO Occupational Safety and Health Convention C155 


No discrimination is practiced

All workers are treated with respect and dignity. The employment relationship is based on the principle of equal opportunity and fair treatment. This means that workers are not discriminated against based on race, colour, religion, ethnicity, disability, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity, political affiliation, union membership or marital and/or pregnancy status in any hiring or employment practices.  

References: ILO Equal Remuneration Convention C100, ILO Discrimination (employment and occupation) Convention C111


No cruel or abusive treatment

We provide a workplace free of harsh and inhumane treatment, including any corporal punishment, mental, physical, sexual or verbal abuse and no threat of any such treatment or other forms of intimidation.
Written disciplinary procedures are established and available to workers in clear and understandable terms. Disciplinary and/or performance management actions are always recorded and explained to workers fully. Workers have the right to trade union or other appropriate representation at disciplinary hearings which may lead to significant disciplinary penalties or dismissal.  
References: ILO Forced Labour Convention C29, ILO Abolition of Forced Labour Convention C105


Fair wages and benefits

We are committed to paying above the National Living Wage for all workers regardless of their age and provide all legally mandated benefits and paid leave. Our rates of pay are reviewed annually each April.
Worker’s salaries are payable monthly on or about the 25th of each month directly into their bank or building society account. Payslips with a full breakdown of what they will receive are provided to workers’ email addresses at least one day prior to receiving their wage.  
References: ILO Minimum Wage Fixing Convention C131, ILO Protection of Wages Convention C95Hours of Work Conventions C001 & C030 


Working hours are not excessive

Working hours comply with national laws. Standard weekly working hours, excluding overtime, are defined by contract and do not exceed 40 hours per week to ensure a safe and healthy working environment and adequate rest time between shifts. The total hours worked, including overtime, in any week does not regularly exceed 60 hours in a single week with a minimum of one day rest per week.  
Working hours may only exceed 60 hours in a single week if any of the following conditions are met: this is allowed by national law; appropriate safeguards are taken to protect the workers’ health and safety; exceptional circumstances apply such as unexpected production peaks, accidents or emergencies.
DOCU 5 Version Date: January 2023
All overtime undertaken over and above the standard working day/week, as agreed upon engagement and is voluntary. Workers receive clear communication about whether overtime is required and the wages to be paid for such overtime. Overtime is either compensated or is taken as Time Off In Lieu (TOIL), as confirmed in the worker’s contract of employment. Any overtime undertaken by workers which is compensated, is at the following rates:  

 

Monday - Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Over 37.5 hours worked

1.25

   

< 7.5 hr shift

 

1.5

1.5

>7.5hr shift

 

1.5

1.5

References: ILO Hours of Work Conventions C001 & C030, ILO Weekly Rest Conventions C106 & C014


Freedom of Association

All workers are free to establish and join groups for the promotion and defence of their interests. Workers’ representatives are free to carry out their representative functions in the workplace.  

References: ILO Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention C087, ILO Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention C098 


Grievance Mechanism

We have an accessible, understandable, and transparent Grievance Policy available to workers. Issues raised should are dealt with promptly by an appropriate level of management and feedback is provided to those concerned, without any reprisal. We also have an established Whistleblowing Policy which provides workers with the option of flagging concerns anonymously through a dedicated hotline.  
References: UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights No.29 & No.31