Edited by Stephen Tully
Chapter 39: Ethical Trading Initiative: Base Code and Priciples of Implementation, 1998
39. Ethical Trading Initiative: Base Code and Principles of Implementation, 1998 Commentary: The Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI, www.ethicaltrade.org/) is an alliance of companies, NGOs and trade union organisations concerned with the labour issues arising from international supply chains. The Initiative is intended to promote ethical sourcing, a concept defined as ‘a company taking responsibility to work with its suppliers to implement internationally-accepted labour standards in the workplace’. The Base Code draws upon ILO Conventions with respect to workers’ rights as well as international human rights standards. ETI member companies are expected to adopt this code of labour practice or formulate their own, provided that it incorporates the Base Code. However, member companies may limit the application of the Code by division or product line and ETI accepts that some non-compliances may take time to fix, for example, if there are constraints arising beyond the supplier’s control, if they are constrained by national law or if the Code is otherwise not realisable. The ETI does not audit or certify corporate compliance, but member companies share experiences. See further, ETI (1997), ‘Eliminating World Poverty: A Challenge for the Twenty-First Century’, White Paper, Cmnd 3789; ETI (2004), ‘Putting Ethics to Work: Annual Report’, London. The Base Code 1. Employment is Freely Chosen 1.1 There is no forced, bonded or involuntary prison labour. 1.2 Workers are not required to lodge ‘deposits’ or their identity papers with their employer and are free to leave their employer after reasonable notice. 2. Freedom of Association and the...
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