Comic Relief’s Statement on Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking

The statement is made pursuant the Modern Slavery Act 2015, and applies to all of our activities.

We are committed to operating with openness, honesty, integrity, and in accordance with the high standards our supporters expect.  In keeping with this commitment and with our vision of a just world, free from poverty, we embrace the purpose of the Modern Slavery Act - to work towards a world without slavery and human trafficking.  We welcome the focus the Modern Slavery Act brings.  

We have zero-tolerance toward slavery and human trafficking.  

Our Structure and Operations

We are a registered charity and are governed by a board of trustees.

We are based in London and employ around 250 permanent and contracted staff members.  We also work with independent contractors, consultants and others to deliver our organisational and operational needs. 

We raise funds through our annual campaigns (Red Nose Day and Sport Relief), events, corporate partnerships and the sale of merchandise.  

Merchandise and Due Diligence 

We have reviewed our operations and believe that our highest point of risk of modern slavery is in the production of branded merchandise. 

Most branded merchandise is manufactured by our corporate partners, who share our zero-tolerance commitment to slavery and human trafficking and have embedded this into their supply chains.  Where we engage with our partners for the manufacture of merchandise, we contractually require these partners to comply with our Ethical Standards Policy (which includes an obligation to comply with the Modern Slavery Act).  Our partners regularly audit their process, practices, and standards, and where such audits reference parts of the supply chain involved in the manufacture of our branded merchandise, we will actively and critically review such audits with our partners.   

If we engage suppliers for branded merchandise directly (and not through a corporate partner), we apply the same approach; we will require the suppliers to contractually commit to our Ethical Standards Policy and to work in accordance with Modern Slavery Act.   We will regularly review (and audit) such manufacturing processes. 

Outside of our supply chain, where we engage with partners who provide us with services, we will always contractually require these partners to comply with law (which includes the Modern Slavery Act). 

We also monitor for other potential areas where slavery or human trafficking may be an issue – for example, in projects we fund. 

Our Own Operations 

In our own operations, we:

  • Operate as a ‘living wage’ employer; 
  • Train our staff; and 
  • Offer whistleblowing process to our staff and our contractors.

Our Training Initiatives

We train our staff on our Ethical Sourcing Policy and other policies (for example, safeguarding).

Our Commitment 

We will:

  • Regularly review our policies and practices, so that we can identify issues and risks and apply appropriate measures in response;
  • Engage with our corporate partners and others who produce merchandise to ensure our requirements in relation to ethical standards are adhered to; and 
  • Ensure that our employees and others who work with us are aware of our ethical standards and know that they will be supported to raise issues.

The above statement applies for the period from July 2017 through to July 2018 and will be updated after July 2018.  

This statement has been approved by the Trustees and management of Comic Relief.