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Labour Standards

Interweave Textiles are distributors of a wide range of medical textiles throughout the UK and Europe.

As a company, the senior management is fully informed of the need for a Labour Standards Policy and the obligation to our employees, customer, and the communities within the sector we operate.

This document outlines our policy in relation to labour standards and has been approved by our LSAS / Customer Services Manager

Scope of the Policy
Interweave Textiles policy ensures that it meets it obligations and commitments and implements this policy in line with UK law as a small / medium enterprise.

Policy Review and Improvements
We will review this policy periodically in line with LSAS policy and legislation changes. We will annually review the policy routinely at the company review meeting as part of our annual management review to enable continual improvement of our systems.

Minimum Labour Standard
Interweave Textiles has identified the following reasons to establish a comprehensive system of Minimum Labour Standards to guide its business operations.
1. Ethical Responsibilities – we accept our obligation to its employees, customers and suppliers within the sector we work to operate in an ethical manner.
2. Risk of Supply – we have identified that labour standards abuses in supply chain can pose a risk of supply. Any supply chain partners who commit abuses face legal enforcement action which could damage business and prevent them in their ability to supply.
3. Damage to the company’s reputation due to adverse publicity – discovery of labour standards abuse presents a reputation and structural risk. (1) Turnover- customers choose to purchase supplies and services from other sources. (2) Staff retention and recruitment may be affected as people choose not to work for a company associated with any labour standards abuses, this could also lead to low morale in the workplace and difficulty in recruitment. (3) Loss of trust with customers and suppliers within the wider society.
4. Quality of Goods and services – we recognise that there is typically a link between labour standards and poor quality of goods and services.

To help it identify a set of minimum labour standards, Interweave Textiles have particularly referred to the following resources:

ETI Base Code
NHS Supplier Code of Conduct
Social Accountability International SA8000
UN’s Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Minimum Labour Standards in UK
1. Child Labour – Interweave Textiles do not engage in or support the use of child labour. If we engage any Work Experience students, we will ensure that a suitable risk assessment is carried out, and that any young person is not exposed to any dangerous conditions, or not work more than an 8-hour day.
2. Forced or Compulsory Labour – Interweave Textiles shall not engage in or support the use of forced or compulsory labour, or bonded or involuntary prison labour. Employees are free to leave upon reasonable notice as outlined in their contract of employment.
3. Health & Safety – Interweave Textiles Ltd shall provide a safe and healthy workplace environment and shall take effective steps to prevent potential accidents and injury to employee’s health by minimising the risk to its employees. All employees will receive safety and job training during their employment. Employees will have access to clean toilet facilities and drinking water. The health and safety responsibilities of Interweave Textiles Ltd have been assigned to the Health and Safety Supervisor,
4. Freedom of Association – the freedom of association is respected and Interweave Textiles will comply with UK labour relations legislation in regard to this.
5. Discrimination – Interweave Textiles will not engage or support any form of discrimination in its employing of staff, salary, training, promotion, termination or retirement based on race or national or social origin, caste, religion, gender, sexual preference, political affiliations, age or other circumstance that could be classed as discrimination. These policies are clearly stated in our equal opportunities policy, which is given to all new employees as part of their induction.
6. Disciplinary Practices – Interweave Textiles will treat all employees with dignity and respect. We shall not or tolerate the use of corporal punishment, mental or physical bullying or verbal abuse of personnel. No cruel or inhumane treatment is allowed.
7. Working Hours – Interweave Textiles comply with all relevant laws and labour standards on working hours and holiday entitlement. Our normal working hours do not exceed 48 hours per week and overtime hours do not exceed 12 hours per week. Before employment we ensure that all employees have the legal right to be employed in the UK.
8. Remuneration – Interweave Textiles shall comply with national laws and regulations relating to wages and benefits. All work-associated activities are carried out on the basis of a recognised employment relationship established according to national law and practice. Where practical, a living wage is aimed for.

Interweave Textiles is also committed to: –
• Compliance with appropriate legal local requirements. We keep abreast of any legal requirements by checking appropriate NGO (NATLEX through ILO) websites and by working closely with a qualified lawyer who specialises in employment law.
• Ensure that key contractors, sub-contractors and suppliers are aware of this policy
• Make available time and resource for the implementation of this policy

Tim Meadows (Customer Services Manager) is the management representative whose responsibility it is to establish, implement and maintain an effective labour standards assurance system, he reports on this to the MD of the parent company.

Targets
Interweave Textiles is committed to the following targets:

• Supplier Self Assessment Questionnaires to be returned within 15 working days of issue.
• Suppliers to provide evidence of social / ethical compliance with every completed Supplier Self Assessment Questionnaires.
• By 4th quarter 2023 ensure that all of our tier 1 suppliers are classed as, and have maintained, a medium risk rating.
• Interweave Textiles will conduct on site visits (either by our own personnel or by an accredited third party) on 25% of our tier 1 suppliers by last quarter 2023.
• Maintain Labour Standards Assurance System (LSAS) level 3 through 2023.
• Conduct Labour Standards Assurance System (LSAS) management reviews within 365 (+/- 5%) of the previous review.
• Acknowledge complaints to complainants within 2 weeks of receipt.
• Close out all Labour Standards Assurance Systems (LSAS) complaints / corrective / preventive actions with 60 days of receipt.

Download Labour Standard Policy (PDF)

Download Whistleblower Policy (PDF)

Last updated: January 2023

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