base_code_poster_6To demonstrate our commitment to Ethical Trading, we’re breaking down each of the 9 Base Code Principles, outlined by the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) – a unique alliance of Companies, Trade Unions (TU) and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), working in partnership to improve conditions for workers who provide goods to the UK & Ireland.

This week we’re focusing on ETI Base Code 6:

Working hours are not excessive:

6.1 Working hours must comply with national laws, collective agreements, and the provisions of 6.2 to 6.6 below, whichever affords the greater protection for workers. 6.2 to 6.6 are based on international labour standards.

6.2 Working hours, excluding overtime, shall be defined by contract, and shall not exceed 48 hours per week*

6.3 All overtime shall be voluntary. Overtime shall be used responsibly, taking into account all the following: the extent, frequency and hours worked by individual workers and the workforce as a whole. It shall not be used to replace regular employment. Overtime shall always be compensated at a premium rate, which is recommended to be not less than 125% of the regular rate of pay.

6.4 The total hours worked in any 7 day period shall not exceed 60 hours, except where covered by clause 6.5 below.

6.5 Working hours may exceed 60 hours in any 7 day period only in exceptional circumstances where all of the following are met:

  • this is allowed by national law;
  • this is allowed by a collective agreement freely negotiated with a workers’ organisation representing a significant portion of the workforce;
  • appropriate safeguards are taken to protect the workers’ health and safety; and
  • the employer can demonstrate that exceptional circumstances apply such as unexpected production peaks, accidents or emergencies.

6.6 Workers shall be provided with at least one day off in every 7 day period or, where allowed by national law, 2 days off in every 14 day period.*

*International standards recommend the progressive reduction of normal hours of work, when appropriate, to 40 hours per week, without any reduction in workers’ wages as hours are reduced

india-1Hardscape are working in partnership to improve conditions for workers who provide goods to the UK & Ireland. The ETI Base Code and ground truth process of implementation are recognised by the UK Government and the UNHRC. This provides an assurance that graduated members are diligent to the requirements of section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 in evidencing an ethical supply chain, and are operating within the Protect-Respect-Remedy framework of the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights.

Hardscape’s commitment to the ETI will never allow work as means of repayment for a loan (bonded labour) to take place and ensures all of its staff are paid fairly. Workers are not required to lodge “deposits” or identity papers with their employer and are free to leave employment after reasonable notice.