ABLESIA Code of Ethics

 

Our purpose as a brand is to have the most sustainable practices caring and being mindful about every moment we create with ABLESIA. This means that we dream, design, produce and sell fashion, all around the world in the best sustainable way we can.

Carry out this mission, we expect our partners – contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, and others – to operate sustainably and to conduct themselves with the most fairness, honesty, and responsibility in all aspects of their business. We make use of this Code of Ethics as a tool to help us choosing and preserve business partners who follow business practices compatible with our policies and values. 

Launched in 2015 ABLESIA's intention is to create clothing that is not only beautiful and minimalistic but more important, timeless. 

Placing ethics at the heart of our business conduct is a strong and fundamental commitment. The basic principle of trust is essential to the sustainable improvement of our business.

The Code of Ethics reinforced our commitment to respect for human rights, not only for employees but for those who work in our supply chains. 

Below are our essential standards that we expect all of our suppliers to follow. Requirements in this Code apply to owned facilities as well as subcontractors, and upstream suppliers.  

Where differences or conflicts in standards occur between this Code and national or local regulation, the strictest standard applies.

 

ABLESIA's ethical principles of business conduct aim to respect the following key international references:

 - Various International Labour Organization’s (ILO) conventions, in particular conventions 29, 105, 138, 182 (child labor and forced labor), 155 (occupational health and safety), 111 (discrimination), 100 (equal remuneration), 87, and 98 (freedom of association, protection of the right to organize and collective bargaining)

- The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

- The UNGP (United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights

- The United Nations Woman’s Empowerment Principles

- The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights

- Fair Labor Association’s Labor Standards

- ETI Base Code

- Modern Slavery Act

 

HEALTH AND SAFETY

Health and Safety of Our Workers

Workers must have a safe and healthy workplace and residential settings to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, linked with, or occurring in, the course of work or as a result of the operation in the facilities.

Workers must have sufficient health and safety training, access to clean washroom facilities and potable water, and clean and safe residential facilities that meet their basic needs. 

Working conditions are decent. A safe and hygienic working environment shall be provided best occupational health and safety practice shall be promoted, bearing in mind the prevailing knowledge of the industry and of any specific hazards.

 

EMPLOYMENT

Transparent and Open Communication 

We made our best to collaborate and participate on a regular basis to actively mitigate negative impacts from operations and work out revelations that may affect the lives of workers, and the environment. 

The Vendor shall implement procedures that allow employees to raise and address workplace grievances confidentially, anonymously, and/or directly, without fear of reprisal or retaliation. The procedure shall be clearly communicated to all employees. Vendors must promptly respond to employees’ concerns.

Corruption and Abuse

There will not be allowed any form of corruption, including extortion, bribery, or other abuses of power to gain an advantage.

Informed Workers

If there is more than one nationality among workers in the workspace this Code will be presented in the correspondent language(s) making sure that all understand it with clarity.

Child Labour is Not Used

Child Labour is not used. The minimal age shall not be less than the age of completion of compulsory schooling and in any case, the minimum age for laboring should be according to the Convention on the Rights of the Child in the United Nations of Humans Rights.

 

HARASSMENT, ABUSE, AND DISCIPLINARY ACTION

All workers shall be treated with respect and dignity. There shall be no room or tolerance for verbal, psychological, unusual punishment or discipline, physical, or sexual harassment, abuse, threats, or intimidation in the workplace.

Living Wage Compensation and Benefits

Living wages are paid. Every worker has a right to compensation for a regular work week that is sufficient to meet the worker’s basic needs. Workers shall be paid at least the minimum wage or the appropriate prevailing wage. Vendors must comply with all legal requirements on wages, and provide any benefits required by law, contract, or global best practice. Female employees must be entitled to maternity protection — leave and benefits as well as protection against discrimination — in accordance with the requirements of national laws and regulations. 

Deductions from wages for disciplinary measures shall not be permitted nor shall any deductions from wages not provided for by national law be permitted without the expressed permission of the worker concerned. 

All workers shall be provided with written and understandable information about the conditions in respect of wages before they enter employment and of the particulars of their wages for the pay period concerned each time that they are paid.

Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

 The Freedom of Association and the right to collective bargaining must be respected. 

The respect of the right of employees to join and organize associations of their own choosing and to bargain collectively without any interference must be respected.

Workers have the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining is restricted under law, the Vendors shall facilitate, and must not hinder, the development of parallel means for independent and free association and collective bargaining. The right of all workers to form and join trade unions and bargain collectively shall be recognized (ILO Conventions 87 and 89).

Employment Relationship

Must be adopted rules and conditions of employment that respect workers and, at a minimum, safeguard their rights under national and international labor and social security laws and regulations.

Employment is Freely Chosen

In any case, we will agree to the use of forced labor in recruitment, hiring, or employment, including but not limited to involuntary overtime, human trafficking, prison labor, indentured servitude, or bonded labor. There shall be no use of forced, including bonded or prison labor (ILO Conventions 29 and 105). Nor shall workers be required to lodge “deposits” or their identity papers with their employer. 

Non-discrimination

Discrimination will not be allowed in recruitment and employment practices. All employees shall have equal access to employment, including hiring, salary, benefits, advancement, training, allocation of work, or retirement, and are not subject to discrimination in discipline or termination, regardless of their race, sex, gender identity, religion, nationality, marital status, ethnic origin, caste, sexual orientation, disability, illness, pregnancy, age, language, social origin, migration status, membership in or sympathy with worker organizations including unions, political affiliation or belief, any other personal characteristics, social group, protected status, or any other status.

Working Hours and Overtime

Hours of work are not excessive. Workers must not work over 48 hours in a regular workweek. All overtime work must be voluntary, compensated at a premium rate, and must not be requested on a regular basis. Working hours, including overtime, do not exceed the legal limit. Break time must be respected as per the national laws and regulations.

 

ENVIRONMENT

Environmental Requirements 

Business partners must make progressive improvements in environmental performance in their own operations and require the same of their partners, suppliers, and subcontractors. This includes integrating principles of sustainability into business decisions; responsible use of natural resources, adoption of cleaner production and pollution prevention measures; and designing and developing products, materials, and technologies according to principles of sustainability.

 

ZERO-TOLERANCE POLICIES

We have preliminary conditions for engaging in and maintaining a business partnership and have zero tolerance for the following:

  1. Lack of transparency, disclosure, and cooperation
  2. Forced labor
  3. Unapproved subcontractors
  4. Minimum wage violations
  5. Child labor
  6. Corruption and bribery

Our policy requires that all suppliers be open, transparent, and cooperative by allowing full access to facilities and provide full disclosure on all practices, locations, and resources related to production.

 

INITIAL ENGAGEMENT AND CONTINUED RELATIONSHIP PROCESS

Inspections Activities

The process of our inspection process includes the following:  

We meet with facility management, tour the installations, review documents, and interview employees and workers at all levels of the organization, including union representation.

Our CoE assessment tool and inspection criteria are what guide our assessments. The inspection ends with a closing meeting with facility management where together we see the conclusions, and a mutually agreed-upon timeframe for implementation of an action plan, if necessary.

Annual Inspections

Our policy is to reassess a facility’s performance on-site at least every 12 months with all facilities.