Modern Slavery Act Statement
This statement is made pursuant to s.54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and sets out the steps that Balcas has taken and is continuing to take to ensure that modern slavery or human trafficking is not taking place within our business or supply chain.
Balcas has a zero tolerance approach to any form of modern slavery. We are committed to acting ethically and with integrity and transparency in all business dealings and to putting effective systems and controls in place to safeguard against any form of modern slavery taking place within the business or our supply chain.
Balcas is one of Britain’s and Ireland’s largest wood products suppliers, with operations across several sites; a sawmill in Enniskillen, CHP Plants in Enniskillen and Scotland and several depots Distribution Centres.
Balcas’ extensive product portfolio includes construction timber, fencing products, pallet & packaging products and high-density wood pellets. Our raw materials are from the sustainably managed forests of Ireland and Britain.
Balcas’ wood pellets have been branded Balcas Energy wood pellets. Balcas Energy wood pellets are a renewable heat fuel that are available to the market in Ireland and Great Britain.
We operate a number of internal policies to ensure that we are conducting business in an ethical and transparent manner. These include:
- Human Resources Policy
- Code of Conduct
- Equal Opportunities Policy
- Whistle blowing Policy
- Anti–Bribery and Corruption Policy
This statement sets out Balcas’ actions to understand all potential modern slavery risks related to its business and to put in place steps that are aimed at ensuring that there is no slavery or human trafficking in its own business and its supply chains. This statement relates to actions and activities during the calendar year 2020.
Balcas recognises that it has a responsibility to take a robust approach to slavery and human trafficking.
The organisation is absolutely committed to preventing slavery and human trafficking in its corporate activities, and to ensuring that its supply chains are free from slavery and human trafficking.
In order to recognise and manage risks involved when engaging with third parties, Balcas implement a Third-Party Due Diligence process. The due diligence process is relevant for new third parties and for third parties Balcas already has an active business relationship with.
The due diligence process is intended to assist Balcas in preventing, detecting and responding to Third-Party risks.
During the performance of due diligence activities, we will gather information about the third parties we (want to) have a business relationship with.
When reviewing this information, we are looking to determine whether there is ‘information that gives reasons for concern’. We need to be alert for potential non-compliant or unethical behaviour.
By performing Third-Party Due Diligence, we obtain enough knowledge on the risks of doing business with relevant Third Parties and can make an informed decision.
Third Party Due Diligence activities consist of three components.
- Enhanced due diligence
- Periodic batch screening.
The aim of these activities is to make an informed decision about the Third Parties that we work with and where necessary to implement mitigating measures. Third Parties are checked for their labour standards, compliance in general, and modern slavery and human trafficking using the Compliance Link Tool.
Code of Conduct
Balcas are committed to ensuring that its third parties adhere to the highest standards of ethics.
We have a Code of Conduct Agreement for all third parties in which third parties agree to:
- Respect the rights of their employees and treat them fairly, in accordance with all applicable laws.
- Provide fair treatment to their employees and create a work environment free from mental or physical coercion, including workplace, sexual, psychological, racial, or religious harassment.
- Not discriminate against employees based on race, colour, national origin, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation or political opinion.
- Provide their employees’ with wages and benefits that meet the minimum required amount by applicable laws/regulations and comply with all applicable laws on work hours and overtime.
- Be inclusive and ensure that their employees and other stakeholders are always treated with dignity and respect.
- Respect freedom of association of their employees and not to retaliate or discriminate against any person in their work force choosing to exercise their right to do so.
- Not engage in or support child labour practices, as well as forced or involuntary labour, including indentured labour, bonded labour or slave labour.
Balcas requires Supervisors, Managers and HR professionals within the organisation to complete training on modern day slavery.
The organisation’s modern day slavery training:
- Highlights the issue of modern slavery and your role in its prevention.
- Describes types of modern slavery and who it affects.
- Considers the new additions to slavery legislation outlined in the Modern Slavery Act.
- Describes how to recognise and report instances of modern slavery.
Responsibility for this Policy
The Balcas Management Team has overall responsibility for this policy and in ensuring that the company complies with its legal obligations.
All managers have the day-to-day responsibility for the implementation of this policy, monitoring its use and ensuring that the appropriate processes and control systems are in place, and amended as appropriate, to ensure it can operate effectively.
Approval for this Statement
This statement was approved in January 2020
Chief Executive Officer