Human rights


Human rights

We must always conduct our operations in a way that respects the human rights of our Employees, the people we work with and the communities in which we operate.


What we believe

We believe that fundamental human rights, as affirmed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, should be respected.

Our policy on people and human rights practices is based on local and international labour laws, recommended practices and guidelines2.

We comply with all relevant applicable labour laws and regulations.


No child labour

We are committed to ensuring our operations are free from child labour. We seek to ensure that the welfare, health and safety of children are paramount at all times. We recognise that the development of children, their communities and their countries is best served through education.

We support ILO Conventions 138 and 182 which set out fundamental principles concerning the minimum age for admission to employment and for the elimination of the worst forms of child labour.

As such:

  • any work which is considered hazardous or likely to harm the health, safety or morals of children should not be done by anyone under the age of 18
  • the minimum age for work should not be below the legal age for finishing compulsory schooling and, in any case, not less than the age of 15

We expect our suppliers and business partners to align with our minimum age requirements, as set out in our Supplier Code of Conduct. This includes, where local law permits, that children between the ages of 13 and 15 years may do light work, provided it does not hinder their education or vocational training, or include any activity which could be harmful to their health or development (for example, handling mechanical equipment or agrochemicals). We also recognise training or work experience schemes approved by a competent authority as an exception.


Human rights management

We are committed to promoting human rights in our sphere of influence, including our supply chain. We operate around the globe, including in countries suffering from conflicts or where democracy, the rule of law or economic development are fragile, and human rights are under threat.

All our suppliers are expected to meet the requirements of our Supplier Code of Conduct, and this is incorporated into our contractual arrangements with suppliers.

As far as possible, our due diligence procedures enable us to monitor the effectiveness of, and compliance with, our policy commitments and our Supplier Code of Conduct, as well as to identify, prevent and mitigate human rights risks, impacts and abuses.

We are committed to fully investigating and remediating any human rights issues identified in our operations or supply chain and to strive for continuous improvement. If we identify human rights breaches in relation to a supplier, but there is no clear commitment to corrective action, persistent inaction or a lack of improvement, then our work with that supplier should cease.


Freedom of association

We respect freedom of association and collective bargaining.

Our workers have the right to be represented by local company-recognised trades unions, or other bona fide representatives. Such representatives should not be discriminated against and be able to carry out their activities in the workplace within the framework of law, regulation, prevailing labour relations and practices, and agreed company procedures.


No exploitation of labour or modern slavery

We are committed to ensuring our operations are free from slavery, servitude and forced, compulsory, bonded, involuntary, trafficked or unlawful migrant labour. Group companies and Employees, (and any employment agencies, labour brokers or third parties they retain to act on our behalf) will not:
  • require workers to pay recruitment fees, take out loans or pay unreasonable service charges or deposits as a condition of employment
  • require workers to surrender identity papers, passports or permits as a condition of employment

Where national law or employment procedures require use of identity papers, we will use them strictly in accordance with the law. If identity papers are ever retained or stored for reasons of security or safekeeping, this will only be done with the informed and written consent of the worker, which should be genuine; and with unlimited access for the worker to retrieve them, at all times, without any constraints.


Local communities

We seek to identify and understand the unique social, economic and environmental interests of the communities we operate in.

We must identify specific human rights risks that may be relevant for, or impacted by, our operations. In doing so, we will seek the views of our stakeholders, including Employees and their representatives.

We will take appropriate steps to ensure that our operations do not contribute to human rights abuses and to remedy any adverse human rights impacts directly caused by our actions.

We encourage our Employees to play an active role both in their local and business communities. Group companies should seek to create opportunities for skills development for Employees and within communities where we operate and aim to work in harmony with the development objectives and initiatives of host governments.


All our suppliers are expected to meet the requirements of our Supplier Code of Conduct, and this is incorporated into our contractual arrangements with suppliers.


Who to talk to

  • Your line manager
  • Higher management
  • Your local LEX Counsel
  • Head of Compliance:
2 The ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Corporations.