Ethical Purchasing Policy

Scope
Blue 9 Security Limited has introduced it’s ethical purchasing policy in order to ensure that it’s suppliers practice ethical sourcing of their materials, products and services in so doing. It is vital that our professional partners adopt acceptable practices and act responsibly in line with relevant codes of practice.  The aim of such policies is to boycott and diminish unethical practices such as the use of ‘sweat shops’ and ‘cheap labour’ or ‘child labour’ as but a few examples of practices that need to be ostracised to extinction.

The Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply (CIPS) promotes good practice and aims to develop higher standards amongst organisations such as Blue 9 Security Limited that engage in any form of purchasing or supplying goods or services.

The CIPS guides responsible partakers on legislative updates, codes of practice and guidelines which currently shapes its own policy on Ethical Business Practices in Purchasing and Supply Management.  Organisations encompassing the principles of ethical purchasing should be aware of the broader ethical frameworks associated with the undertaking of this policy which include:-

  • The Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) Base Code
  • The Core Conventions of the International Labour Organisation (ILO)
  • The UN Declaration on Human Rights
  • SA8000 (a standard relating to social accountability developed by the Council on Economic
  • Priorities Accreditation Agency in New York - now known as Social Accountability International (SAI) refer to (cepaa.)
  • The Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises developed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) refer to (oecd.org//daf/investment/guidelines/index.)

Business Controls
As part of this policy, Blue 9 Security pledges to address ethical issues within it’s own remit in terms of assisting it’s suppliers in supporting the fight against unethical practice.

Whilst it is expected that our suppliers will already have vetted their own sources to avoid any unethical practices, we expect transparency, positive engagement and will assist in addressing issues as far as we can to ensure that they are compliant with national and international legislation and on how to protect the human rights of those at risk of exploitation.

Therefore, Blue 9 Security will not condone or continue trading with organisations found to be:-

  • Knowingly condoning or benefiting from the exploitation of others either directly or indirectly
  • Exercising the abuse of power for financial gain
  • In breach of professional conduct including corruption
  • Resistant to change in line with ethical codes of practice or legislation including Trade and anti-trust legislation, the Competition Act 1998 (especially chapter II), Abuse of Dominant Position and the Treaty of Amsterdam (Articles 81 and 82)

Personal Interests
Any business partner that has a personal or vested interest or that stands to gain financial reward must officially make this known to Blue 9 Security to ensure objectivity and transparency in all undertakings.

Business Gifts
Blue 9 Security has a clear policy on the offer and receipt of business gifts which is accepted as standard business practice; however staff must comply with set down procedures before accepting personal or corporate offerings of any kind.

Supplier Payment
Suppliers should not be required to pay to be chosen as a preferred or approved supplier.  All suppliers to Blue 9 Security are selected through merit and in having met fair and uniform selection criteria.

Agreed Payment Terms
In all undertakings, there is an understanding that each party will deliver the required goods and services and that upon satisfactory receipt of either; that payment will be made in full or as stated.  Suppliers will agree to specified payment terms prior to any trading and as such payment of invoices should be paid accordingly.  Late payments undermine the business relationship and weaken an organisation’s credibility.

Barter and Reciprocal Trading Policy
Bartering is accepted business practice whereby a more competitive price or added value is requested as part of a business transaction.  Barter is referred to as trade by exchange of goods and services for other goods instead of it being one sided as there is no exchange of monies.  As barter is not considered a condition of contract as each party stands to gain what they need, there is no issue of coercion.

Reciprocal trading is generally conditional but is widely acceptable where there is no coercion and where both parties mutually agree and remain transparent in all dealings.  Boundaries remain within this practice where the supplier is equally a customer which is unacceptable practice.

Competition
Blue 9 Security commands that relationships with its suppliers, remains professional at all times no matter the length of their contract or business arrangement.  Blue 9 Security Limited will at all times ensure that it pursues the best value whilst not compromising on ethics and internal policies.

Small Enterprises
Blue 9 Security endeavours to encourage and promote the local community wherever possible so long as they embrace our approach to ethical purchasing and sourcing methodologies.

Environmental Aspects
Whilst Blue 9 Security Limited has it’s own environmental policy to comply with, it understands that it is difficult to ascertain standards of companies operating in countries beyond the United Kingdom.  We do however pledge to work with our suppliers to help them meet core standards and obligations towards the protection of the environment and ethical trading activities.

Social Commitment
As a responsible employer and service provider, Blue 9 Security readily resolves to review its supplier’s activities, associations and sources.  Blue 9 Security endorses the CIPS policy on Ethical Business Practices details practices considered inappropriate and unacceptable in any shape or form.  Such practices include:-

  • Forced labour which contravenes human rights
  • Unlawful or non-binding employee contracts that exploits employees
  • Disallowing or preventing staff members the freedom of association such as unionisation
  • Paying under the minimum wage or below inflationary levels leading to ethical, economic and social improprieties
  • Forcing employees to extended working hours, not allowing for reasonable breaks, leave or rest days
  • Ill- treating staff either physically, mentally or using any form of abuse including bullying or harassment and denying staff to exercise grievance and appeals procedures
  • Engaging in illegal practices or activities both nationally and internationally
  • Failing to provide safe and hygienic environments for its employees
  • Being either directly or indirectly is involved in any form of child labour whereby their education is compromised or placing anyone under 18 years of age in employment at night or in hazardous conditions. Or being in breach of the provisions of the International Labour Organisation Convention 138 or not conform with the United Nation’s Conventions that focuses on the Rights of a Child
  • Partakes in or condones discrimination which contravenes the Blue 9 Security policy on Equality and Diversity. Discrimination being classed as race, caste, religion, nationality, gender, age, beliefs, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, political preferences or union membership.

Review Strategies
Blue 9 Security will continue to review its suppliers to ensure that standards do not slip.  Each supplier will be requested to declare their practices and sources and will be requested to adopt ethical policies and procedures.  Blue 9 Security will routinely:-

  • Review supply chains
  • Identify and rectify problem areas
  • Consult with other organisations or bodies and will pool information
  • Devise and construct policy to adapt to change and to continuously improve

Culture Awareness
Blue 9 Security will expect it’s business partners, suppliers and staff members to support its principles.

Corporate Codes of Practice

A code of practice or statement of intent sets out our policy on ethical issues in order to specify its priorities whilst ensuring that its policies and procedures work in tandem.  Therefore Blue 9 Security will:-

  • Conduct internal quality assurance exercises
  • Seek new ways of contributing to the worthy cause of ethical purchasing and encourage better practices with our business partners and suppliers
  • Seek new opportunities to promote best practice such as promoting fair trade practices, visit the Fair Trade Foundation at www.fairtrade.org.uk where interested parties such as Blue 9 Security can apply for a business licence
  • A good source of following ethical practice is the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) which is a conglomerate of various companies, trade unions and non-governmental organisations whose primary function was to form codes of practice

Ongoing Monitoring
Through internal monitoring and quality assurance measures, procedures and working practices may evolve and transform over time and may need to be introduced in phases where practices need to change on a grand scale or where impacts need to be buffered.

Blue 9 Security suppliers should therefore not be adverse to supporting monitoring exercises, potential site checks, face to face meetings and feedback detailing successes and developmental areas.

Verification
For any organisation that adopts an ethical purchasing policy, it must readily accept that there will be a degree of public verification with the potential of public reporting on its contribution to their ethical purchasing trading process.  Supporters can expect verification to be conducted by trade unions and independent non-governmental organisations such as charities that champion human rights like Oxfam or the Red Cross or consultancy and certification firms such as www.ethicaltrade.org.

Therefore it is our commitment to make full disclosure of all circumstances concerning production, supply of goods and the use of sub-contractors to ensure ethical compliance at all levels.  We understand that our verifiers reserve the right to conduct unannounced inspections to monitor us in the same way that we must monitor our own suppliers.

Useful Ethical Trading Sources
Other relevant organisations with useful websites are listed below that Blue 9 Security and its partners may contact in relation to the ethical trading policy are as follows:-

  • The Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply - www.cips.org
  • Institute of Business Ethics - www.ibe.org.uk
  • The Small Business Service - www.businessadviceonline.org
  • International Labour Organisation (ILO) - www.ilo.org
  • Oxfam, World Development Movement www.oneworld.org
  • TUC - www.tuc.org.uk
  • Save the Children - www.savethechildren.org
  • The Fair Trade Foundation - fairtrade.org.uk
  • Natural Resources Institute - projects.nri.org
  • The Ethical Trading Initiative - www.ethicaltrade.org
  • Worldaware business – www.worldaware.org.uk
  • UN Global Compact - www.unglobalcompact.org

Blue 9 Security Priorities
As part of our commitment, we pledge to follow these simple principles:-

  • To work collaboratively with our suppliers in pursuit of the above mentioned standards and to seek ways of making a positive impact on our partners and suppliers
  • To strive for continuous improvement on ethical trading practices to ensure more than just compliance
  • To guide our partners towards corrective actions rather than to sanction or penalise them to ensure that they become compliant so long as they readily adopt our ethical policy
  • To review and revise these principles and aim to visibly improve how we operate as a responsible organisation
  • To adopt a risk-based approach to the implementation of these standards to ensure adequate measures are in place to monitor our effectiveness and compliance levels
  • To report publicly where necessary and transparently with regard to the following the standards and incorporating this policy
  • To raise awareness of ethical trading and to promote its principles to our business partners and suppliers
  • To ensure that adequate training is given to our staff and that we lead by example in adhering to employment law and human rights rulings