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NICE Code of Conduct and Manual For the Fashion and Textile Industry

May 2012

Nordic Fashion Association

Kronprinsensgade 13, 4.

DK-1114 Copenhagen K

Nordic Fashion Association was founded in 2008 by Helsinki Design Week, Icelandic Fashion Council, Oslo Fashion Week, Swedish Fashion Council and Danish Fashion Institute.

NICE (Nordic Initiative Clean and Ethical) is a joint commitment from the Nordic fashion industry to take a lead on social and environmental issues. NICE was launched in 2009 as a project under the Nordic Fashion Association.

This publication is a revision of the edition made in collaboration with Dansk Fashion & Textile and A Better Choice in 2009.

Published by Danish Fashion Institute and Nordic Fashion Association

© Copyright 2012 Nordic Fashion Association

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission in writing of Nordic Fashion Association, or as expressly permitted by law, or under terms agreed with the appropriate reprographics rights organisation. Enquiries concerning reproduction outside the scope of the above should be sent to Nordic Fashion Association, at the address above.

You must not circulate this publication in any other binding or cover and you must impose the same condition on any acquirer.

Every effort has been made to trace the copyright holders for this publication. Should any have been inadvertently overlooked, Nordic Fashion Association will be pleased to make the necessary changes at the first opportunity.

Edited by Jonas Eder-Hansen and Sophian Drif, Danish Fashion Institute

Artwork by Jakob Bay, www.baysic.com

Revised by Trine Beckett, Sisters Ink.

Printed in Denmark on Cocoon Offset by one2one

We would like to thank our sponsors: (see pdf)

Table of contents

0.0 | The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual 4

1.0 | Human Rights 10

2.0 | Labour 16

2.1 | Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining 10

2.2 | Forced labour 22

2.3 | Child labour 24

2.4 | Discrimination 26

2.5 | Working hours 27

2.6 | Wages, payroll records and deductions 28

2.7 | Labour contracts 30

2.8 | Sick leave and annual leave 31

2.9 | Grievance system 32

3.0 | Occupational health and safety 34

4.0 | Environment 46

5.0 | Corruption and bribery 56

6.0 | Ethical conduct 64

6.1 | Animals 68

6.2 | Designers 70

6.3 | Models 72

6.4 | Transparency 74

6.5 | Jewellery 76

7.0 | Monitoring and Evaluation 78

8.0 | The NICE Code of Conduct principles 88

Principle 1–2 | Human rights 90

Principle 3–6 | Labour 91

Principle 7–9 | Environment 96

Principle 10 | Anti-corruption 98

Principle 11 | Animals 99 Principle 12 | Designers 100

Principle 13 | Models 101

Principle 14 | Transparency 102

Principle 15 | Jewellery 103

Principle 16 | Monitoring and evaluation 104

0.0 | The NICE Code Conduct and manual

The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual

The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual strives for alignment with international standards and universal principles. For this reason, the Code and Manual have taken their inspiration from the UN Global Compact’s ten principles, but have sought to provide additional specificity from a sectoral perspective. Other sector specific content has thus been included with a view to promoting higher levels of sustainability performance on a wide range of topics relevant for the fashion and textile industry.

The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual are an initiative of the Nordic Initiative Clean and Ethical (NICE), and were developed in close consultation with industry representatives and other relevant stakeholders. Input was also sought from the UN Global Compact Office, which has welcomed this effort to align with the UN Global Compact principles.

The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual are being released as a consultation draft with a view to obtaining further input and finalising the documents by the end of 2012. Further information about the process after the Copenhagen Fashion Summit will be communicated at the Summit.

The NICE Manual

The purpose of the NICE Manual is to assist you in upholding the 16 principles in the NICE Code of Conduct.

The NICE Manual refers to the principles of the NICE Code of Conduct, but is more specific. It provides guidelines for continuous improvement toward ethical, responsible and sustainable textiles and fashion—in relation to the challenges and dilemmas specific to the industry.

The NICE Manual explains:

What it means to act in accordance with the NICE Code of Conduct,

Why it is important, and

How to do it.

Furthermore you will find important facts and information on where to learn more about creating a long-term viable and sustainable business.

Your brand is responsible

When consumers think of a brand they rarely distinguish between the supplier, subcontractors and other business partners. In case of violations of ethical or environmental standards they will hold the brand responsible. In other words, your brand pays the price when something goes wrong—or conversely, it gets the credit for the positive stories told by employees, locals, the media and stakeholders.

Thus when we refer to “you” in the NICE Manual, it designates not only you as a supplier but also your business partners and subcontractors in your own country and internationally. You are responsible for ensuring a sustainable, responsible and ethical business throughout your supply chain.

Involve your subcontractors

The textile and fashion industry of today is complex and globalised and most companies will at some point operate in countries or interact with business partners that do not respect the protection of human rights and fair working conditions. Therefore, it is important to have policies on how to ensure that your subcontractors or business partners follow the principles of the NICE Code of Conduct.

You also need to consider how to react in case a violation of the NICE Code of Conduct takes place. What kind of action do you take if a child is found involved in your subcontractor’s production facilities, if a pregnant woman is dismissed or if chemicals from the factory are found in the local lake? Should you assist your subcontractor in taking corrective measures? Or terminate your business relationship? The NICE Manual helps you make decisions concerning these sorts of problems before you encounter them.

Make visits to your business partners

NICE recommends using independent auditors and making unannounced visits to the factories producing your goods. Smaller companies could consider forming joint ventures for such controls through industry organisations or networks, e.g. by hiring independent auditors or NGOs in collaboration with another company to ensure the quality of working conditions throughout their supply chain.

The NICE structure

The NICE Manual comprises seven chapters, each of which delves deeper into the principles of the NICE Code of Conduct and develops how to work with them on a daily basis.

1 Human rights

Referring to principles 1 and 2 in the NICE Code of Conduct

Respecting human rights is the core of making a viable and sustainable business. Everyone that works for or with your business should be treated with dignity and respect. Ensure that your business activities in no way infringe on the rights of others. Where possible, seek to have a positive human rights impact and contribute to the realization of human rights.

2 Labour standards

Referring to principles 3, 4, 5 and 6 in the NICE Code of Conduct

The complex and globalised textile and fashion industry faces some specific challenges concerning working conditions. Treat all women and men fairly at work—respect and support human rights and nondiscrimination.

3 Occupational health and safety

Developing labour standards in the NICE Code of Conduct

Securing the health and safety of employees is a continuous challenge. You need to work proactively to minimise work-related risks and hazards.

4 Environment

Referring to principles 7, 8 and 9 in the NICE Code of Conduct

Ensure the health, safety and well-being of all women and men workers. This requires you to work proactively to minimise work-related risks and hazards.

5 Anti-corruption

Referring to principle 10 in the NICE Code of Conduct

Corruption is a major hindrance to development and fair competition and should be eliminated in all its forms.

6 Ethical relations

Referring to principles 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15 in the NICE Code of Conduct

Be proactive when it comes to the treatment of animals, design processes, body image ideals, mining or extraction of gemstones and promoting transparency in the supply chain.

7 Monitoring and evaluation

Referring to principle 16 in the NICE Code of Conduct

Transparency is key to ensuring credibility among stakeholders and keeping your own company committed to responsibility. Monitoring and evaluation is key to securing supplier compliance.

The NICE Code of Conduct and Manual does not cover every aspect of how to operate ethically in the manufacturing industry, nor does it cover any of the legal requirements in the countries in which you operate. Always be sure to follow local rules and regulations in the production country and be aware of the fact that not all countries have ratified the UN and International Labour Organization (ILO) core conventions, which set international rules and regulations regarding minimum standards for acting in accordance with basic human rights.

Please inform us if you become aware of any additional aspects, challenges, or new ways of responding to these, issues that we should include in the NICE Manual. Please contact us through the Nordic Fashion Association website: www.nordicfashionassociation.com

The Danish Fashion Association wishes to thank the following contributors for comments, insights and valuable help throughout the process of revising the NICE Code of Conduct and Manual:

Ole Overgård, Auluna Group

Dorte Rye Olsen, Bestseller

Carien Duisterwinkel, Business Social Compliance Initiative

Maria Kim Lassen, Danish Ethical Trading Initiative

Cathrine Poulsen-Hansen and Dylan Tromp et al., Danish Institute for Human Rights

Pia Odgaard, Dansk Fashion & Textile

Julia Kilbourne, UK Ethical Trading Initiative

Henrik Lampa and Maritha Lorentzon, H&M

Morten Lehmann and Ken Daniel Petersen, IC Companys

Peter Beckett, International Fur Trade Federation

Harsh Saini, Li & Fung Ltd.

Katja Lemmens, Modström

Pernille Lind Olsen and Per Henning Nielsen, Novozymes

Claus Teilmann Petersen, PANDORA

Cecilia Brandenhoff and Anders Holbech, PwC Denmark

Michael Rae, Responsible Jewellery Council

Michael Spenley, Shop Direct Group

Rebecca Earley and Kay Politowicz, Textile Futures Research Centre

David Hasanat, Viyellatex Group

Soren Petersen, Mads Ovlisen and Ursula Wynhoven, United Nations Global Compact

Anne Prahl, WGSN

1.0 | Human Rights

The fashion and textile industry has complex connections to many diff erent contractors in many diff erent countries. The search for profit is likely to create the temptation to exploit people associated with the industry, e.g. workers and models. But respecting human rights is the core of making a viable and sustainable business and you have the responsibility to make sure that everyone who works for or with your business is treated with dignity and respect.

1.0 | Human Rights

Principle 1 | Businesses must support and respect the protection of internationally proclaimed human rights, and

Principle 2 | Make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses


Anyone who works for or with our business and contributes to or is impacted by it in any way should be treated with dignity and respect, regardless of social status, personal characteristics and beliefs. Discrimination in any form is prohibited and abuse is not tolerated.


People, production and quality are interrelated. Genuine respect for a company’s labour force and stakeholders can promote long-term viable business, whereas violations of human rights and discrimination risk isolating a business from the wider community and damaging a company’s reputation. A poor image potentially affects a company’s profitability and stock valuation.


The NICE Manual refers to human rights as described in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The declaration defines human rights as the basic rights and freedoms to which all humans are entitled. These include civil and political rights, such as the right to life and liberty, freedom of expression, and equality before the law; and economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to participate in culture, the right to food, the right to work, and the right to education.

Respecting human rights includes avoiding complicity in human rights abuse. This basically means that businesses should avoid being implicated in human rights abuse beyond their own direct business activities, or, in other words, in human rights abuse caused by another company, government, individual, group etc.


Publish a written procedure defining the step-by-step process involved in hiring and firing workers

Raise awareness about the importance of human rights issues among your workers

Ensure that every worker in your supply chain knows what it means to respect human rights

Ensure that every worker knows who is responsible for safeguarding the protection of human rights at all staff levels

In the case of violation of human rights, be sure that your workers and managers know who to contact and what actions to take

Learn more

International governmental recommendations: Global Compact, Principle 1-2

NGO work on human rights: Amnesty International – Business and Human Rights

Human rights in general: Danish Institute for Human Rights International governmental recommendations on human rights: United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNOHCHR)

2.0 | LABOUR

The manufacturing industry faces some specific challenges concerning working conditions, not least because production often takes place in undeveloped countries, where respect for human rights and the wellbeing of workers are overshadowed by problems related to poverty. This chapter will guide you through the challenges you are most likely to meet.

2.1 | Freedom of association and the right to collec tive bargaining

Principle 3 | Businesses must uphold the freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining 


We encourage the workers’ right to freedom of association and collective bargaining. We ensure that workers participating in unions are not subject to discrimination or punitive disciplinary actions.


A genuine dialogue with freely chosen worker representatives enables workers and employers to reach better mutual understandings. Security of representation is a foundation for building trust on both sides. Dialogue makes it easier to anticipate problems related to the workplace and to make agreements that are mutually beneficial. In some countries, though, there are severe restrictions on the right to free association. NICE recommends that factories operating under such circumstances facilitate the formation of parallel means to independent and free association, such as working groups or committees that include all workers in the factory.

Freedom of association mechanisms (unions, workers’ groups/committees) can also enable proper grievance systems to develop.

Learn more

International governmental recommendations:

UN Global Compact, Principle 3,

International labour conventions:

The Labour Principles of the United Nations Global Compact: A Guide for Business (2008) and ILO Convention No. 83 on Labour Standards


Protect the right of workers to meet in the factory during breaks, after or before work to discuss working conditions and concerns

Be informed about local laws in regard to collective bargaining and free association, in your own and your subcontractors’ countries

Communicate your policy about the right to collective bargaining and freedom of association to the workers

Train your managers and supervisors in freedom of association compliance and give your workers instructions on their rights under national law and company standards

Facilitate the formation of parallel means to independent and free association for all workers, such as working groups or committees, in the factory

2.2 | Forced labour

Principle 4 | The elimination of all forms of forced and compulsory labour 


We do not use prison or forced labour. Workers have permission to leave the factory under reasonable circumstances, such as personal or family emergencies. Workers are not required to leave any original ID documents or monetary deposits at the factory, with employers or agents acting for employers. Overtime has to be performed voluntarily. No labour should be demanded as a means of repayment for a loan. We do not under any circumstances support forced or bonded labour, trafficking or the exploitation of human beings in general. Trafficking and exploiting another human being for the purpose of monetary gain is not in alignment with the NICE ideals. We can only condemn such actions in every respect.


Working by free will is essential in creating a viable business. Forced labour undermines the society in which you do business, reducing the lifetime earnings of whole families and depriving societies of the opportunity to develop human resources for the modern labour market. An inhuman number of involuntary overtime hours above legal limit can to certain extent be considered a form of modern slavery.


According to article 2, paragraph 1 of ILO Convention No. 29 on Forced Labour, forced labour is defined as “all work or services exacted from any persons under the menace of any penalty and for which the said person has not offered himself voluntarily”.

Bonded labour occurs when workers are obliged to keep on working to reimburse a debt to the employer of a credit facilitator, often because they are subject to penalties or deductions in the context of their work.


Communicate to all workers that your factory does not tolerate any kind of forced labour

Ensure that all overtime is voluntary, through audits or regular assessments

Do not keep workers’ ID documents, passports or tickets

Pay wages directly to the worker

Ensure that workers who have to leave the factory do not suffer any penalties as a result

Do not restrict or limit workers in any way when they need access to religious facilities, toilets or drinking water

Train supervisors and workers on your policies

In cases where you use contractors or agents for labour recruitment, ensure that the terms of employment for those workers do not include conditions violating the ILO Forced Labour Convention

Do not withhold any part of worker wages in an effort to prevent them from resigning

Learn more

International governmental regulations and recommendations:

“Prevent Human Trafficking a Joint UN Commentary on the EU Directive: A Human Rights- Based Approach” (2011) and the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons

International labour conventions on trafficking:

ILO Convention No. 20 The Right to freedom from slavery, servitude, forced labour or bonded labour (art. 5 EU Charter and art. 4 ECHR; art. 8 ICCPR; art. 10 ICESCR; art. 11 ICRMW)

2.3 | Child Labour

Principle 5 | The effective abolition of child labour 


We do not accept child labour, and we do our utmost to determine the correct age of the workers employed by us and by our subcontractors. More concretely, we reject work that deprives children of their childhood, their potential, their schooling and their dignity, and whatever is harmful to their physical and mental development, e.g. heavy, night or dangerous work.


Child labour is a sensitive issue. While it is easy to agree that children should generally not be working before they have reached the age of completing compulsory education, the fact remains that in some societies child labour does exist, often due to very poor social conditions. NICE encourages you to always work for the children and the improvement of their situation. For example if a child is found in your workforce, the best solution is often not to dismiss the child. Instead you should have clear guidelines on how to cope with the situation in a manner that assists the child with e.g. compensation, alternative work and education or vocational training.


The ILO defines hazardous work for children as:

– Work that exposes children to physical, psychological or sexual abuse;

– Work underground, underwater, at dangerous heights or in confined places;

– Work with dangerous machinery, equipment and tools, or involving the manual handling or transport of heavy loads;

– Work under particularly difficult conditions, such as work for long hours or during the night or work where the children are unreasonably confined to the premises of the employer;

– Work in an unhealthy environment that may expose children to hazardous substances, agents or processes, temperature, noise levels and vibrations damaging to their health.


Establish an age verification procedure when hiring workers

Ensure that all labour contracts include an identity card with date of birth and photo

If a child is discovered in the workforce, have an action plan that points out the role of the company, suppliers and family and takes measures to ensure that the child’s situation is improved

Be familiar with the NGOs that work for children’s rights and who to contact in case you have questions and need help

Have responsible managers to ensure that no youth ts are exposed to night work or hazardous work as defined by the ILO

Collaborate with relevant parties, i.e. trade unions, subcontractors, NGOs, or other companies, to improve the systems and processes that prevent children from working in the manufacturing industry and setting clear minimum age requirements in accordance with international standards

Learn more

International governmental recommendations:

UN Convention on Rights of the Child ILO Convention No. 182 on Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour and No. 138 on Minimum Age Convention

NGO recommendations:

Save the Children Denmark: Child Labour Toolkit, Responsible Approaches to Child Labour in the Textile and Garment Industry (2006) Save the Children, UNICEF and UN Global Compact: Children’s Rights and Business Principles Danish Ethical Trading Initiative: Tackling Child Labour in Global Supply Chains

2.4 | Discrimination

Principle 6 | The elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation


We do not accept discrimination in regard to race, skin colour, religion, political or sexual orientation, gender, national origin, or social rank or status. Workers should be hired because of their ability to do the job and not because of their individual characteristics. Creating and fostering equality and endorsing equal rights should be the sound base for any company. Female applicants are not to be tested for pregnancy and not to be discriminated in their hiring, advancement, discipline or retirement practise.


Discrimination is not only cruel to individuals, minority groups and people in general, but is also a source of unstable social relations, affecting not only businesses but also communities negatively. NICE urges working against discrimination in any form.

Learn more

International labour conventions: ILO Convention No. 183 on Maternity Protection; No. 111 on Discrimination; No. 100 on Equal Remuneration; No. 143 on Migrant Workers

International governmental recommendations: UN Global Compact, Principle 6, and the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles


Have an employment policy that prohibits discrimination

Communicate this policy to your subcontractors and to relevant HR and management staff

Train your staff on non-discrimination policies and practises

If the policy is violated have an action plan for how to remove the discriminatory elements

Have a policy that prohibits discrimination against pregnant women

Encourage flexible work options to support women that have multiple roles such as being the primary caregiver for young and elderly

Pay equal remuneration, including benefits, for work of equal value and strive to pay a living wage to all women and men

Provide a favourable environment for all pregnant workers in accordance with ILO No. 183, such as granting six weeks leave before and after the presumed date of confinement and a job that is compatible with the worker’s physical condition from the moment she is informed about the pregnancy until 120 days after childbirth 

2.5 | Working hours


We do not exceed local limits on working hours. In accordance with the ILO we do not require workers to exceed 48 hours of work per week on a regular basis and we encourage reducing work hours to 40 hours per week and a maximum of 8 hours per day. Workers should be provided with at least one day off for every seven-day period. Overtime is voluntary and should not exceed 12 hours per week. Overtime is not demanded on a regular basis and is always compensated at a premium rate of wages. We keep work hour records for at least two years.


Long working hours and overtime are a huge challenge in the manufacturing industry, in which problems with quality, late delivery of raw materials or last minute alterations often minimise the time left for production. The amount of working hours has a direct impact on the workers’ health and safety situation—too much work imposes more injuries and accidents as well as a lower overall productivity—therefore NICE recommends working proactively on reducing overtime. Furthermore, reduction of overtime can lead to reduced worker turnover.

Learn more

International labour conventions: ILO Convention No.1 on Working Hours


Have a work schedule that limits overtime and encourages workers not to work on their days off

Keep work hour records containing overtime and lunch breaks or other statutory breaks during the day for at least two years

Keep work hour records for temporary and subcontracted workers

Make work hour records that are accessible to workers and comparable with payroll records

Have a system for assessing the skills of new workers and provide the necessary introduction or training soon after their employment

Have a well-developed production plan that includes information about critical paths and standard roduction times

Continuously work to improve communication between merchandisers, factory management and production to minimise problems of e.g. late delivery and tight deadlines  

2.6 | Wages, payroll records and deductions


We respect the workers’ right to earn a living wage and we ensure that wages paid for a normal work week meet at least legal or industry minimum standards—whichever is greater. The wage should always be sufficient to meet the basic needs of workers and their families. We keep understandable payroll records for at least two years. We do not accept deductions as a disciplinary measure. Wages are paid regularly, on time and in a way that is convenient for the workers.


Wages above the minimum requirement attract the best and most stable labour force. Factories that pay and focus on living wages often have a higher productivity and lower amount of overtime. To maintain a healthy workforce NICE encourages the provision of at least one free daily meal at work. Payroll records help you document an accurate and complete amount of working hours.


At no time is it acceptable for any worker to earn less than USD 2.3 (before legal taxes and deductions) per standard working day of 8 hours, which is equal to a monthly income for 24 days’ work or no less than USD 56. This reflects the World Bank’s definition of “moderate poverty”, which is defined as living on less than USD 2 per day.

The monthly payroll records should contain:

– Number of regular hours worked that month

– Amount of overtime hours worked that month

– Sick leave or other absence that month

– Bonuses for that month

– Deductions—why and how much they are

– Worker’s contracted allowance agreement

– Basic salary for that month

– Overtime payment for that month – Wage for that month

– Payment day

– Worker’s signature


Prior to employment provide all workers with written and easily understood information about wage conditions

Pay wages that are sufficient to meet the basic needs of workers and their families

Pay all wages regularly, on time and in a way convenient for the workers

Only deduct wages according to national laws

Deductions must never constitute an amount that will result in the worker receiving less than minimum wage

Provide workers with a pay slip when they receive their salary showing regular and overtime hours as well as regular and overtime rates

Inform workers how calculations are made if you use a piece-rate system. If the piece-rate wage does not meet legal minimum wage, then pay the difference so it does

Learn more

ILO Convention No. 95 on Protection of Wages 

2.7 | Labour Contracts


All workers should have a written employment contract that contains an accurate and complete summary of the terms of employment, including wages, benefits and working conditions. This also counts for foreign, migrant or home workers, who in any case are not to be treated less favourably. If an worker is illiterate, the working conditions should be explained to the worker prior to signing the contract. No workers are to be asked to sign any blank papers. Labour contracts should extend to sub‑contracted workers.

In countries where the law permits apprenticeship programmes, we accept apprentices working on the basis of an apprenticeship contract, but we monitor continuously that apprentices actually perform an apprentice function.


A labour contract protects both the employer and worker from misunderstandings. It protects the worker from being exploited, and the employer from being accountable for incidents that are beyond the employer’s responsibility.

If workers do not directly work for the employer but for the foreman it can lead to poor working conditions such as low pay, excessive and compulsory overtime, poor health and safety in work and living environments etc.


Home worker is defined as a person who is contracted by a company or by a supplier, sub-supplier or subcontractor, but does not work in the factory or in the factory area.

Learn more

OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers


Employment contracts state the responsibilities of both parties and contain work assignments, salary agreements (both regular and overtime allowances), special benefits, and include a copy of the worker’s identity card (photo and age)

The employment contract is signed by both employer and worker—often required by national law

The worker has a copy of the contract in a language that he or she understands

The employment contracts of migrant, temporary or home workers are equivalent to the standard of the contracts of permanent workers

Keep all paperwork for dismissed workers for at least two years (contracts, any disciplinary action taken etc.)

Work proactively to outline, define and work collaboratively on addressing the important and growing issue of contract/sub-contracted labour within key sourcing markets

Apprentices are subject to the same statutes and enjoy the same protection and benefits as normal workers e.g. the time period is reasonable and offers opportunities for advancement, increased payment and more permanent employment 

2.8 | Sick leave and annual leave 


All workers should be able to leave without any negative repercussions if they are sick or have stipulated annual leave. If an worker is injured during work, the factory should pay any costs not covered by the national social security.


A healthy and stable workforce is the backbone of every viable business. Therefore, sick workers should be allowed to stay home until they have recovered. A sound health and sickness policy demonstrates respect for and valuation of the workers, which in the end results in a better and more dedicated work force as well as a higher productivity.

Learn more

ILO Convention No. 152 on Sick Leave and No. 139 on Holidays with Pay


Have a health and sickness policy that states clearly what happens if an worker gets sick or injured

Clearly inform workers about the health and sickness policy when they are hired

Provide workers with a copy of the health and sickness policy in easily understandable language

Keep records of social security transactions, industrial injury insurances and the paid sick leave accorded, for at least two years

2.9 Grevance System


A grievance system ensures that workers have the opportunity to anonymously present matters of concern related to their employment and workplace.


A grievance system is a way to obtain information from workers about issues of importance in the workplace. Often a grievance system is the only way to get to know what workers think about working conditions, thus enabling you to listen and help the workers in order to prevent problems or make improvements. Freedom of association mechanisms (unions, workers’ groups/committees) can enable proper grievance systems to develop.


Have a grievance system in place that allows workers to report anonymously

If you have a suggestion box, place it where workers can make a contribution unnoticed in an out-of-the-way place, e.g. in a bathroom or a stairwell

Encourage workers to express their opinions, e.g. by talking about complaints and suggestions, how you dealt with them and how they made a difference

Provide opportunities for workers to talk with someone other than their supervisor

Assign a committee to be responsible for guaranteeing improvements in the working area

Have a system that documents your efforts

3.0 | Occupational Health and Safety

 Securing the health and safety of workers is a continuous challenge. You need to work proactively to minimise work-related risks and hazards. This chapter points out how to handle important health and safety issues such as fire and other emergencies, first aid, safety equipment, housekeeping and working conditions in general. 

3.0 | Occupational Health and Safety


We require that worker safety is a priority at all times. We also require suppliers to ensure that workers are protected from hazardous equipment, insufferable surroundings or unsafe premises. The workplace should be safe and hygienic, and the supplier should take effective steps to prevent potential accidents and to minimise health risks as much as possible. Safety awareness should always be a priority and should be understood and implemented daily by everyone working in the factory.


Lack of control over the safety situation can cause injuries or death, which is why establishing systems to detect, avoid or respond to potential threats to the health and safety of workers is crucial. NICE recommends that you investigate work-related accidents and keep a record of them that states the causes and remedial measures taken to prevent similar incidents. NICE also recommends creating a detailed safety policy.

In particular, the following safety issues should be taken into account: general routines and working conditions, emergency preparedness, emergency exits, fire, first aid, safety equipment (sandblasting), housekeeping (food, water and sanitary facilities), housing facilities and dormitories.


General routines and working conditions

Document the status of health and safety issues and plans for improvements in an annual written report

Train your workforce on a regular basis to raise awareness of health and security issues

Provide all workers with information in their local language about the health and safety standards relevant to their activities that includes the effects of chemicals and substances used in manufacturing processes, lists potential hazards and explains what measures are available to protect workers

Provide the information orally and in writing

Provide all workers with regular and recorded health and safety training

Ensure that all work stations have adequate body positioning, lighting, air, ventilation and temperatures at all times

Provide fans or heaters where required Set up a routine for regular cleaning of the heating, ventilation, and/or air conditioning system

Provide all workers with access to water at all times

 Emergency preparedness:

Have a procedure in place for identifying workplace hazards and assessing the risks

Have a safety committee or group that includes management representatives, workers from various factory divisions and, if possible, representatives from trade unions. They meet regularly to discuss safety in various work areas, possible scenarios, different responsibilities in an emergency situation, complaints and the overall level of safety in the factory

Keep a record of the meetings and their outcomes

Have procedures to prepare for and respond to possible emergencies, such as fires, earthquakes, hurricanes or chemical spills

Ensure that all workers are aware of the safety precautions, such as emergency exits, fire extinguishers and first aid equipment

Clearly display an evacuation plan in your factory written in a language(s) that all workers understand and with symbols showing the location of e.g. fire equipment and escape routes

Have a description of the role and responsibility of workers in the event of an emergency to make them well prepared if an accident occurs

Regularly hold evacuation drills to ensure that all workers are familiar with evacuation procedures

Document the drills with date, evacuation time, participants and photos. Evaluate the drills afterwards

Emergency exits:

Have clearly marked exits, and preferably emergency exits, on all floors at all factories and/or housing facilities

All emergency exit doors must open outwardly

Emergency exit doors must not be blocked on the inside or the outside by e.g. goods, fabrics or boxes

If emergency exits are locked for safety reasons or to prevent theft, place the keys behind breakable glass next to the exit doors or make them easily accessible and thus available to all staff at all times

Ensure that the factory has enough emergency exits to safely serve the number of workers. NICE suggests that if there are less than 150 workers there should be two exits; between 150-1,000 workers, three exits; and more than 1,000 workers, four exits. Emergency exits must not lead to elevators

Clearly mark all exits with signs written in language(s) that all workers understand

Ensure that exit signs are visible from a distance of 30 m (100 ft) and that the letters are at least 15 cm (6 in) high, brightly coloured and contrast with surrounding surfaces

Install emergency lighting that shows where the emergency exits are in the event of a power shortage


Post fire brigade telephone number on notice boards

Ensure that all workers know how to contact the fire brigade in the event of an emergency

Have an audio or visual device, such as an alarm, that is triggered by fire or smoke and can alert occupants in the entire building

Check the fire alarm regularly

Install all floors and sections of the factory with fire extinguishers that are regularly checked and clearly marked so they are visible from at least 30 m (100 ft) away

Make a sufficient number of fire extinguishers available on all floors

Train an adequate number of workers in the proper use of fire extinguishers

Document fire fighting drills with date, participants and photos

First aid:

Equip the factory and, if present, dormitories with first aid kits that are simple to use for lay persons

Have a doctor or nurse available at short notice if accidents occur

Keep a record of work-related accidents in a logbook that describes the cause of the accident and the remedial measures taken to prevent future accidents

Regularly provide workers with first aid training


What a suitable number of workers trained to give first aid is depends on the number of workers in the factory and the distance from the factory to the nearest medical facility. NICE recommends training at least one worker on every factory floor. This person should be easy to identify, e.g. by a visible Red Cross or Red Crescent symbol on the sleeve.

We also recommend one first aid kit for every onehundred workers. The kit should be located on the factory floor to give workers immediate access and should be clearly marked.

Safety equipment:

Supply workers with personal protective equipment, i.e. specialised clothing or equipment that guards against health and safety hazards

Maintain, service and equip all machinery with proper protection measures

Do not accept any hazardous work equipment or unsafe factories and/or housing facilities

Install adequate ventilation in a separate, closed area, if you sandblast. Educate workers on how to use adequate personal protection equipment


Examples of typical personal protection equipment include hearing protection, such as earmuffs and earplugs (required when the noise exposure level is over 85 dB); eye protection, such as safety glasses, goggles, masks, face shields, gloves, aprons and hard hats; and foot protection, such as safety shoes.


Sandblasting involves propelling an abrasive material at high-velocity to clean or etch a surface. Widely used in the manufacturing industry sandblasting requires paying particular attention to safeguarding the health and safety of workers. Extended inhalation of the dust created by sand (or similar materials) causes silicosis, an occupational lung disease.

Housekeeping (food, water and sanitary facilities):

Clean your factory on a daily basis

Keep stairs, aisles and exits clear

Keep workstations free of dust, clutter and litter

Keep roofs and roof drains clean and unclogged

Make drinking water available on every floor that meets local quality standards for potable water

Store flammable and combustible chemicals and materials properly

Store and handle hazardous chemicals in a safe manner at all times

Provide workers with a clean canteen/dining area equipped with cooking stoves, refrigeration, adequate counter space for food preparation and hot and cold running water

Provide clean sanitary facilities with separate facilities for men and women.

Provide worker access devoid of unreasonable restrictions

In general, provide workers with easy access to food, sanitary food storage, fresh, clean, potable water, toilet and bath facilities and medical aid

 Housing facilities and dormitories

Equip housing facilities and dormitories with conditions similar to those required in the workplace with regard to cleanliness and health and safety arrangements

Ensure that housing facilities meet national standards for living facilities

Equip dormitories with safety lockers

Provide all workers with their own individual bed

Do not place restrictions on the workers’ right to leave the dormitory outside of work hours

Set the rent in accordance with the local housing market, the workers’ salaries, and the conditions of the facilities

Ensure that dormitories are in compliance with local and national housing laws and/or occupancy requirements, in addition to health and safety laws

Keep a record of investments or other initiatives made to improve the worker living conditions


The United States Department of Labor defines hazardous chemicals as a substance capable of doing harm to people.

Workers in the manufacturing industry related to the fashion and textile industry deal with numerous chemicals every day. Labelling and registration of the chemicals are needed on a global scale in order to ensure that workers and companies are able to identify hazardous from safe chemicals and thereby guarantee a high level of protection for people and nature.

Learn more

ILO Plan of Action 2010-2016: Ratification and effective implementation of the occupational safety and health

4.0 | Environment

The textile and fashion industry is a large-scale player when it comes to environmental impact. Ensuring a sustainable production with a minimisation of negative environmental consequences is part of your obligation as a responsible player in the industry.

4.0 | Environment

Principle 7 | Businesses must support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges, and

Principle 8 | Undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility


Environmental sustainability concerns an organisation’s impact on living and non-living natural systems, including the ecosystems of land, air and water. In some textile producing regions freshwater and drinking water have become a scarce resource, which often has to do with industrial consumption and waste. We work for more efficiency in the conservation of freshwater. We consider environmental initiatives an integrated part of management planning and we work for continuously improving environmental responsibility.


The world is facing a complex set of challenges regarding environmental issues. Each day we dump millions of tonnes of hazardous waste, we use toxic chemicals, diffuse heavy metals and produce wastewater. The manufacturing industry is a large-scale consumer of clean water and as water scarcity becomes a serious problem in many parts of the world, the industry has to work on finding new ways to minimise water consumption. There may be corollary pressure, both regulatory and reputational, on products that require a significant quantity of water. Such products may be phased out by law, lose market share to less water-intensive products or cause reputational damage to the company. Furthermore increasing water prices and other natural commodity prices such as oil are pushing the industry to think the environment into their core business strategy.

Also when it comes to pollution challenges like chemicals, air emissions and hazardous waste, prevention is better and cheaper than cure. Pollution is likely to impose irreversible and severe damage to local communities, the labour force and hence to the business of suppliers and subcontractors. NICE recommends working continuously towards cleaner, more environmentally friendly production and addressing, in particular, the usage of sustainable energy throughout the supply chain.

In particular, the following environmental issues should be taken into account: waste, water, chemicals, energy usage, carbon dioxide and air emissions.


Work with integration, engagement and action when it comes to environmental management in general

Integrate environmental issues in your business plan by e.g. setting goals to minimise the amount of wastewater produced and recycle as much as possible

Engage people—the workforce, locals, NGOs and other stakeholders—by sharing your concern for the environment with them

Take collective action, collaborate and share knowledge about best practices and methods with business partners and colleagues

Develop a better mutual understanding of sustainable business practices by engaging in partnerships with suppliers. Partnerships can also create a societal and environmental impact that goes beyond the business scope

Taking the environmental impacts that occur in a typical garment lifecycle and stakeholder concerns into consideration, the following issues need to be addressed by the fashion and textile industry: waste, water, chemicals, energy usage, carbon dioxide and air emissions:


Reduce or eliminate waste of all types, including of water and energy, at the source or by employing practices such as modifying production, maintenance and facility processes, material substitution, conservation, recycling and re-using materials

Monitor, control and treat wastewater and solid waste generated from operations and industrial processes such as wet processing as well as sanitation facilities as required by national law prior to discharge or disposal

Conduct any discharge or disposal under the highest national standard when it comes to preserving the environment

Identify and manage chemicals and other materials that pose a hazard if released into the environment to ensure safe handling, movement, storage, recycling or reuse and correct disposal

Have established guidelines that explain how and where the waste is kept and delivered, and if any special precautions should be taken


Monitor and record the amount of water used for specific processes Monitor and record the amount of recycled water

Monitor and record your water footprint throughout the value chain

Monitor and manage the risks related to water issues— regulatory, reputational etc.

Summarise improvements regarding water issues in your factory in an annual written report

Make your water policy available to the public and communicate it to everyone involved in your business

Combine processes when possible

Use clean technology which allows for a reduced number of cleaning/rinsing steps

Principle 9 | Encourage the development and diff usion of environmentally friendly technologies


Close cooperation with stable and trustworthy suppliers is fundamental to ensuring the production of secure textiles. Testing and certification are important, but not enough. You must ensure a common understanding between you and your suppliers of the necessary requirements regarding the use of chemicals. Consider upgrading your suppliers’ level of knowledge of the chemicals, their effect and environmental impact as an investment that pays off

Ensure that your factory possesses a list of all chemicals used in the processes at the factory that describes their use and environmental impact

The supplier of chemicals should provide all information about the contents, and a material safety data sheet (MSDS) form should be applied in all transactions

Inform all workers working with hazardous chemicals of the risks involved and train them to cover, handle, move, store, recycle or reuse and dispose of the chemicals in question

Work actively to replace all hazardous chemicals by introducing a restricted substance list prohibiting certain materials and chemicals

Ensure that all chemicals or substances classified as hazardous bear an information label that lists details about the specific chemical Provide workers with written instructions on the properties of the chemicals

Substitute harsh and environmentally polluting chemicals with less impacting chemicals or enzymes

Energy usage, carbon dioxide and air emissions

Measure the carbon footprint of the facilities you own and operate

Set reduction targets and request that suppliers do the same

Report the carbon footprint of the facilities you own and operate and begin requesting that suppliers do the same

Work actively to increase the portion of products made out of less carbon-intensive materials

Monitor emissions and the greenhouse gases emitted during production

Characterise, monitor, control and treat all air emissions of volatile organic chemicals, aerosols, corrosives, particulates, ozone depleting chemicals and combustion by-products as required by national law prior to discharge

Regularly check the efficiency and age of your production equipment Use environmentally friendly energy sources

Move away from fuels with high CO2 emissions towards fuels with low CO2 emissions

 Use environmentally friendly auxiliaries

Focus on auxiliaries with:

– Low environmental impact when produced

– Efficient in production including increasing through put, shortening process time, and hereby low volumes of auxiliaries with high impact

– Readily degradable in effluent treatment plants

– Low toxicity in the atmospheric and aquatic environment

The above can be achieved by e.g. environmentally friendly chemicals and biotechnological solutions such as enzymes

Implement clean technologies

– Recycle water and heat

– Implement water saving equipment

– Combine process steps when possible

– Implement clean processes/technology to avoid cleaning/rinsing steps

– Implement low temperature processes

The above can be achieved by e.g. implementing the most recent developments in machinery with low energy and water consumption and biotechnology, which allows for low temperature and combined processing.


According to ILO’s International Occupational Safety Health Information Centre, the properties of a chemical should be described on a material safety data sheet. The data sheet should provide the following information:

1 Identification:

– Name of the substance or preparation

– Name, address and telephone number of the company/supplier/undertaking

2 Composition and information on ingredients

3 Hazards identification

4 First-aid measures

5 Fire-fighting measures

6 Spillage, accidental release measures

7 Handling and storage

8 Exposure controls and personal protection

9 Physical and chemical properties

10 Stability and reactivity

11 Toxicological information

12 Ecological information

13 Disposal considerations

14 Transport information

15 National regulations and references

16 Other information

Learn more

Handling chemicals:

International Occupational Safety and Health Information Centre

Water management: UN Global Compact’s CEO Water Mandate

Climate: UN Global Compact’s Caring for Climate

European energy sustainability: EU directive REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemical substances)

International governmental recommendations: UNECE classification model, Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)

International standardisation on environmental management: ISO 14001

International labour tools: ILO environmental assessment approach

5.0 | Corruption and bribery

Corruption not only damages investments and growth rates in countries. It also makes firms become ineff icient. Corruption is a major hindrance to development and fair competition, and should be eliminated in all its forms. 

5.0 | Corruption and bribery

Principle 10 | Businesses must work against corruption in all its forms, including extortion and bribery


All forms of corruption, facilitation payments, extortion and embezzlement are strictly prohibited. Such activities may result in immediate termination of the business relationship, in communication with relevant authorities and organisations, as well as in legal actions. We expect the highest standards of integrity in all business interactions.


It is widely recognised that corruption is one of the world’s greatest challenges. Each year more than USD1 trillion is paid in bribes. These payments undermine fair competition and affect the profitability of businesses operating globally. They are a hindrance to development as they divert public resources away from their legitimate uses, such as providing education, clean water and health care for citizens. Nevertheless, corruption is in some countries considered normal and is found necessary to secure a firm and run a business. NICE recommends striving towards a business where corruption is eliminated completely. No bribery, improper gifts or the like can be offered or accepted.


Have policies, procedures and management systems in your organisation ensuring that your employees know how to deal with bribery and corruption

Define the vulnerabilities in your organisation and describe the preventive measures you intend to implement to eliminate corruption

Introduce anti-corruption policies and programmes within your organisations and business operations

Communicate your policy to all relevant persons

Report on the work carried out against corruption annually

Join forces and cooperate within your industry and with other stakeholders to eliminate all forms of corruption

Have established procedures on how to handle corruption if you discover it inside your organisation 


Corruption is defined by Transparency International as “the abuse of entrusted power for private gain,” which means both financial and non-financial gains.

Extortion is defined in the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises as follows: “The solicitation of bribes is the act of asking or enticing another to commit bribery. It becomes extortion when this demand is accompanied by threats that endanger the personal integrity or the life of the private actors involved.”

Facilitation payments are defined in Transparency International’s Business Principles for Countering Bribery as “small unofficial payments made to secure or expedite the performance of a routine or necessary action to which the payer of the facilitation payment has legal or other entitlement.” Facilitation payments are also called facilitating, speed or grease payments.

Bribery is defined in Transparency International’s Business Principles for Countering Bribery as follows: “An offer or receipt of any gift, loan, fee, reward or other advantage to or from any person as an inducement to do something which is dishonest, illegal or a breach of trust, in the conduct of the enterprise’s business.”

Learn more

International governmental recommendations: UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights – “Protect, Respect and Remedy” Framework, Section II

UN Global Compact, “Guidance Document: Implementation of the 10th Principle against Corruption” (2004)

Transparency International’s “Business Principles for Countering Bribery” (2002)

6.0 | Ethical Conduct

 The textile and fashion industry is subject to a great deal of criticism since fashion in itself inspires the consumption of goods people do not necessarily need. A line of clothing only lasts one season. Therefore it is extremely important to be proactive when it comes to creating ethical relationships with respect to the treatment of animals, design processes, body image ideals, mining or extraction of gemstones, and transparency in the supply chain.

6.1 | Animals

Principle 11 | Many fashion businesses have made a conscious ethical decision not to use real animal fur (e.g. fox, sable, mink, rabb it) or exotic and wild-caught animal species (e.g. snake, crocodile and ostrich). We recognise this choice, and we acknowledge that other businesses have chosen to take a diff erent path. In businesses where animals are used for labour and/or production such animals must be treated with dignity and respect. No animal must be deliberately harmed or exposed to pain. Taking the lives of animals must at all times be conducted using the quickest and the least painful and non-traumatic methods available. These must be approved by trained veterinarians and only conducted by competent personnel.


We do not tolerate the maltreatment of animals and animals must be cared for and protected from harm. We do not support the use of any endangered species listed in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. We recommend following the guidelines in the European Convention for the Protection of Animals Kept for Farming Purposes.


Animals are sentient beings and it is the responsibility of humans to ensure that they have a “life worth living”. We do not support the usage of down and feather plucked from living birds. The maltreatment of animals can cause severe reputational damage in relation to retailers, consumers and other stakeholders. Animal activists are very persistent in their work and have a record of greatly influencing decision makers.

Learn more

European regulation on the protection of farming animals, animal welfare and industry regulations: The EC strategy 2012-2015

Information on threatened animals: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

International guidelines on international governmental recommendations and regulative instruments: UN Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO)


Have an animal treatment policy that clearly states that garments containing animal-derived products are produced using abundant species that have been treated in accordance with international animal welfare standards, as well as animal welfare standards laid down by European law

Clearly label garments containing parts of animal origin as such, including the name of the part used (such as leather or natural fur) to ensure that consumers are not deliberately or unintentionally mis-sold goods they do not wish to purchase

Species farmed for any consumer goods must be produced to standards found on highly regulated European farms. This includes Directive 98/58 on the protection of animals kept for framing, and the 1999 Council of Europe Recommendations on the keeping of animals for fur. Animals taken from the wild must have been afforded the protection of the International Agreement on Humane Trapping Standards, and hunted in accordance with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s ’sustainable use’ policy

Where possible, reputable voluntary schemes should be used to ensure that the highest possible standard of care is given to all animals used for the purposes of fashion

Always obtain a guarantee that down and feather only originate solely from dead birds

 6.2 | Designers

Principle 12 | Businesses and their designers must work actively to encourage and support sustainable design and design processes


Sustainability considerations should be mandatory for all lifecycle stages when designing a new product. We want to reduce negative environmental and social impacts by having designers rethink every stage of the design process, including concept, material and production choices and sampling and development, as well as consider creative concepts for sale, use and end-of-life of a product, from a sustainable and responsible perspective.


We can no longer afford to ignore the impact on our ecosystems caused by wasteful and destructive design and manufacturing processes that cause harm to both society and nature. By focusing on sustainability and design ethics in the fashion and textile industry, we encourage and support those who lead the way in creating new design processes that satisfy customer demand while fostering more sustainable consumption, as well as reflect the pressing social and environmental needs of the planet.

Learn more

Sustainable design strategies for textile and fashion designers: TED’s TEN developed by Textiles Environment Design (TED)

A design tool to evaluate waste, energy, toxics and water in materials and manufacturing: Nike Environmental Design Tool


Encourage designers to be curious about where materials come from and the environmental impact a product creates during its entire lifecycle to ensure responsibility in making design and production choices.

Ensure that the design process, in all its stages follows or exceeds international working and environmental standards.

Consider consumer involvement and culture—ensuring products are created and marketed in a way that reflects diverse, multicultural societies and depict and engage with men, women and children in a positive and healthy way.

Help designers to connect ideas both internally and externally—encouraging the use of open innovation methods—to enable and promote systemic change.

6.3 | Models

Principle 13 | Businesses must through their choice and treatment of models promote a healthy life style and healthy body ideals, and the models’ minimum age must be 16 during fashion weeks and other occasions where the workload is excessive


The fashion industry has often been blamed for promoting a body image ideal of extreme thinness, eating disorders and poor body image among people whose bodies do not conform to the idealised image. We are aware of the impact of the fashion industry on body image ideals, especially among young people. Consequently we work towards promoting a healthy life style in relation to food, body and exercise. We only use models over the age of 16 for shows during fashion weeks and we secure a healthy working environment by providing wholesome and nourishing food at photo shoots and shows.


The health and working conditions of models are part of securing a sustainable business. Therefore we take care of the models’ welfare. By promoting a healthy life style among our employees and other business relations, we contribute to building a credible and sustainable brand.

Learn more

Children under 18 years and relation to business and human rights: “Children’s Rights and Business Principles” by Save the Children, UNICEF and UN Global Compact Securing a healthy working environment for models: “Danish Fashion Ethical Charter”, by Danish Fashion Institute and Danish National Society Against Eating Disorders and Self-Mutilation


Support a healthy way of living for models, whose livelihood depends on their bodies and looks. Help them to live healthily, sleep regularly, eat right and exercise

Be attentive to the influence of the fashion industry on body image ideals, especially with younger people

Provide wholesome and nourishing food at photo shoots and shows

What the Code is About
Companies Who have signed the Homeworkers' Code of Practice
Retailers, manufacturers, fashion houses and labels who have not signed the Homeworkers Code Of Practice
Co's targetted for letters to sign code


What the Code is about

The homeworkers' code of practice has been developed by the TCFUA

together with representatives of the retail and manufacturing in the textile, clothing and footwear industries. The Code is a self regulatory system that intends to regulate and monitor the production chain from the retailer to the homeworker.

It also attempts to simplify the reporting requirements of manufacturers building solidly on award entitlements to workers.

There are two parts of the code.

Part one is the part relevant to retailers, "The Statement of Principles Regarding Homeworkers Wages and Conditions".

This includes:

Ten principles that outline the parties to the agreement intent.

The acceptable work conditions and pay rates homeworkers should receive.

That parties to the agreement will promote that manufacturers must comply with these standards.

Retailers who purchase products not produced by exploited labour may use or identify these products with a logo or other sign of compliance.

Retailers committ not to sell products which have been produced by exploited labour, this may include terminating a relationship with a supplier.

The Code will lead to garments carrying a sign that they are manufactured ethically and that shops will carry a logo if they stock such clothing. Retailers may promote the fact that they only deal with accredited manufacturers who do not exploit homeworkers.

Part Two The Code of Practice: This part sets out the criteria for participating manufacturers.

There is a Code of Practice Committee which will oversee the setting up and ongoing management of the Code.

It involves an accreditation procedure whereby manufacturers who give work to contractors or directly to homeworkers seek accreditation.

The accreditation process will ensure that from the retailer down to the homeworker the chain is transparent.

This will be achieved by the following steps:

Retailer signatory to the Principles will provide to the union lists of their suppliers

Retailer will require their suppliers in their purchase contracts, to comply with all laws and regulations including payment of the sewing garment rate relevant to homeworkers.

Manufacturers or suppliers to retailers will seek accreditation

Accredited suppliers will provide documentation to Code Committee verifying that the subcontractors they use are keeping all appropriate documentation and paying their homeworkers according to the agreed garment sewing time manual standard.

Pay rates for homeworkers

The introduction of a timing manual where garments will be classified into three levels of complexity and become the standard for fixing sewing time rates translated into pay rates for homeworkers.

The minute sewing time per garment provided to the homeworker to sew will be adjusted with percentages for annual leave and public holidays. The homeworker must receive with each batch of work paperwork which identifies that the homeworker is being paid correctly according to the standard.

The code also specifies the minimum garments (total amount of work) per week a homeworker can receive from a contractor over a two week period as well as the maximum work load they can receive over a two week period.

Manufacturers will risk loosing accreditation and contracts with retailers if their contractors fail to pay homeworkers correctly.

Code of Practice Committee:

The committee will undertake an education and information program to educate and inform Manufacturers , Homeworkers and Consumers about the code.


Companies Who have signed the Homeworkers' Code of Practice






Retailers who signed a ‘Deed of Co-operation" with the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Union of Australia in 1995/96

Australia Post Ken Done & Associates Pty Ltd

Country Road Pty Ltd Target Australia


Retailers who have signed the Homeworkers Code of Practice
Best and LessBig WBrown Sugar
Coles SupermarketDaimaruDavid Jones
DottiEventsFashion Fair
FosseysGowingsJacqui E
JagJust Jeans Pty LtdKaties
KmartLowes ManhattanMaggie T
Myer Grace BrosNajeePelaco Pty Ltd
PortmansRockmansRoger David
SabaSussanSuzanne Grae
The Clothing CompanyWestco JeansWitchery Fashions Pty Ltd


Manufacturers, Fashion Houses and Wholesalers who have signed the Homeworkers Code of Practice


Anthea Crawford*

AFG Kidswear

Australian Defence Apparel


Brian Rochford*

Carla Zampatti P/L*

Casco Blue Pty Ltd

Clothes Scene Pty Ltd


Consolidated Apparel P/L*


C.T.M. Clothing

Dara Star Fashions*

Depict Distributors

Depict Knits


Diamond Cut*

Dimension Clothing

G A Fashions*


General Pants*

Hadfom P/L*

Hallmark Mitex

Hot Clothing Co. P/L*

Hot Gossip*

Hot Tuna Pty Ltd

Hound Dog Australia P/L

House of David

House of Stitches

Ivorie Australia

K Mart

Kenwall Clothing Co. P/L*

King Gee Clothing Co.Konange Pty LtdL A Shirts*
Lisa T Shirts* Mont Adventure Equip’t*My Garment Co. P/L*
Jasprop/AutumnNeater FashionsDavenport
Taking ShapeNeat N' Trim

Pacific Brands

BerleiBonds IndustriesCandy Footwear
HoleproofJockey/Red Robin
Park Lane FashionsPeter Weiss Pty LtdPaddymade*
Ranier P/L*Resort Report*Physico*
SimonaSara Lee IntimatesSheridan*
Sportsgirl/Sportscraft*S F Corporate Clothing*Sport Fashion Group
Stafford GroupSportsknit P/LS&R Fashions
Tajura Fashions*Sunny Textile IndustriesTable Eight*
Trent Nathan P/L*Time SportswearTrackmaster
Turning Point


Yaramovsky Pty Ltd
*indicates signed the Retailer section of Code also
Industry Associations who have signed the Homeworkers Code of Practice
ARA - Australian Retailers Association (specific section within the Code for ARA members)
TFIA - Textile Footwear Industry Association
ABC - Australian Business Chamber
ACM - Australian Chamber of Manufactures

Retailers, manufacturers, fashion houses and labels who have not signed the Homeworkers Code Of Practice

26 Red
ARC Fashions
A.P sportwear
Advance Force
Alexanders Clothing
Allied Force
Andorra Aust.
Any Wear
Aroma Atelier
Aust. Fashion Grp
Australia Co-ordinates
Australian horizons
Avon Fashion
AWR Outbound
Backbay Clothing
Bad Girl
Berkeley Fashions
Big Deal
Billie Cart Clothing
Bintax Sportswear
Black lagoon
Blooms Design
Blue Gum
Blue Illusion
Blue Ridge
Box Canyon
Brag distributors
Brag jeans
Breakaway Sportwear
Canturbury Intern
Casual Guy
Casuals plus
Chelsea Girl
Cherry Lane
Christopher Ari
Christopher Chronis
Christopher George
CK Clothing
Country club
CR Brearley & Co
Cranlough t/ahomebase
Creative Brands
Creative Clothing
Danchen Fashions
Definitions exclusive
Design Marks
Designer Kidz
Dimension Clothing
Dixon clothing
Eastbound Cloth Co
Eastside clothing
Eco Vision Elite
Elle Clothing
Fashion Warehouse
Fields Knitwear
Fletcher Jones
French Poodle
Gaz man
Genuine Article Clth.
Geoff Blade
Hang Ten
Harris Scarfe
Harry Who
Havana Blue
Hemlea Fields
Hilton Fashion stores
Hilton Hosiery
Hilton Kayser Impressions
Inroads Clothing Items
Jay Jays
Jane Lamerton
Jean Wear
John Cavill
Johnny Dexter
JPD by Jump Julie Slade Jump distributors
Jump items
Kactus Bay
Kelly Country clthing
Kerry McGee
Kids Club
Landes Warehouse
Last Gasp Jeans
Laura Ashley
L&N Ross
Leona Edmiston
Lisa Barron
Little House
Living Doll
Luva Wear New Attitude Fashions Nif Naf
M Hambour & Sons
Man to Man
Mahon miralia
Malcolm Distr.
Marianna Hardwick
Mark Richards Designs
Merlvic Schrank
Mondrian Corp
Mutz manufacturing
My Size
Nelson Leong
New Kid in town
No Excess
O&B Clothing
Oshkosh B'Gosh
Otard Creations
Ozzie CozziePagoda
Part of mePerri Cutten
Postie Fashions
Pretty Girl Fashion
Puff'n Gully
Quarterback Clothing
R.M Williams
Radio Active
Rip Curl
Rita Louise
Rixon Holdings
Rob Paynter
Rockwell Clothing
Run Scotty Run
RustlersSammi of melb.
Scanlan & Theodore
Scooter ManagementSfida Sports
Sirocco House
Sky designs
Spalding Aust.
Spare time
State of Art
Stockley Clothing
Stuart McDondald
Stubbies Clothing Co
Studio Kids
Sunday Jump
Sunshine Clothing
Supre Sweet Dreams
Syndicate Taxi
The Collection
The Santuary Thomas
Cook Time Frame
Trebble AAA
Trend Avenue Apparel
Very Very
Victoria Pde Clothing
Victory Vita pacific
Wild Card
Work Out
Young Originals

Co's targetted for letters to sign code:
Bad Girl
Brave John
Cavill Jane
Perri Cutten
Very Very

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