Modern Slavery Statement
Annual Anti-Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement
Pursuant to the Modern Slavery Act 2015
This is our first statement to outline the steps we are taking as an organisation to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in our business and the supply chains which serve it. This statement is for our financial year ending 31 July 2018 and gives details of our planned actions for our current financial year.
We are a family business and care very genuinely for the welfare of our colleagues, customers and all those who work in our supply chain providing goods or services.
Our company is registered in the UK and our business comprises 15 garden centres all located in the South East of England. We are therefore governed and regulated by UK law. We do not employ anyone outside the UK. We take pride in complying with both the letter and the spirit of UK employment law and best practice and seek to encourage healthy working relationships and a culture of openness throughout our business. This approach is backed up by relevant policies including our whistle blowing policy. We do not use agency workers, other than for short term sickness or vacancy cover. Whenever we need agency staff we employ reputable UK employment agencies
Our Supply Chain
Our supply chain is complex because of the range of plants and other goods we offer for sale to our customers. Well over 80% of the plants we sell come from UK nurseries. Most of our other products are purchased from UK suppliers with some from EU and EEA suppliers. A very small minority is purchased from non UK, EU or EEA sources.
What Actions are we Taking?
- Tool kits and Training.
We have registered with the Stronger2gether initiative. This is a collaborative organisation comprising many well- known retailers, other brand leaders and charities which provides guidance, training and other tools on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking. We are using the tool kits provided to build policies and procedures appropriate to our own business and to help inform our enquiries of our suppliers. In addition, we are making use of the training provided by Stronger2gether with the aim that the relevant people within our organisation will participate in this training on line and/or in the classroom by March 2019.
- Mapping Our Supply Chain.
Our buyers, our facilities manager and other relevant members of our senior team have been briefed and have been tasked to identify the parts of our business, relevant to their own particular remit, where there may be a risk of Modern Slavery. This will enable those members of staff and the Directors to take steps to assess and manage any risks identified. Progress will be discussed at our March 2019 Board Meeting.
- Our Modern Slavery Policy.
Our policy is a zero -tolerance approach to Modern Slavery. It is vital that all our business relationships are conducted ethically, with integrity and transparency. We are committed to implementing and enforcing effective systems and controls to ensure that Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking are not taking place anywhere within our business or its supply chains.
As a result of the exercises at 1 and 2 above this policy will be further developed and put before the Board at our March 2019 Board Meeting
- Supplier Code of Conduct.
Concurrently we shall be developing our supplier code of conduct or responsible sourcing policy. This will be placed before our July 2019 Board Meeting. We shall expect our suppliers of goods or services to accept our code of conduct or be able to demonstrate equally robust policies and procedures in their own business.
This work will allow us to measure our effectiveness going forward, as well as enabling us to make sure members of our team are aware of the risks.
Approved by the Board of Directors
15 November 2018