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Skipton's Commitment

Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement

The Society’s Board fully supports the objectives of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and is intent on meeting the specific requirements of the Act in relation to where the Society might encounter modern day slavery.

Specifically, the Society will not engage in any business activity with a third-party organisation which engages, or is believed to engage in, people trafficking, slavery, forced labour or domestic servitude.

The financial services industry does not carry a high-risk exposure to modern day slavery. Nonetheless the Society undertakes due diligence on its key third-party partners and suppliers to ensure that their policies and practices are both compliant with the Modern Slavery legislation and are aligned to the Society’s expectations.

During 2022 the Society continued to develop its approach to protect against people trafficking, slavery, forced labour or domestic servitude from its supply chain and have strengthened our position by assessing our supply chains response towards modern slavery via a sustainability ratings service. This service provides a rating summarising each firm’s proposed way of tackling a range of sustainability matters including Modern Slavery. The rating is based on the evidence provided of appropriate policies, processes, tools and certification.

This action builds on activity that the Society already has in place including:

  • Became a signatory of the UN Principles of Responsible Banking (PRBs) further strengthening our alignment with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) including Goal 8 “Decent work and economic growth”, which aims to tackle many of the underlying causes of Modern Slavery
  • Invested in a new Strategic Sourcing system to enhance and automate our supply chain management including the provision of evidence of Modern Slavery compliance from new and existing suppliers
  • Seeking and receiving evidence from the Society’s most critical suppliers that where they are required to publish a Modern Slavery Statement that they have done so
  • We became the first Financial Services organisation to receive five-star recognition for our support of the SDGs from Support the Goals, an initiative to rate and recognise the businesses that support the SDGs
  • We have a Sustainability governance group which oversees the work we do to support the SDGs as part of our Sustainability Strategy. The Group is made up of members from all areas and levels of the Society. They monitor progress against the Society’s Sustainability Strategy and drive the delivery of our vision to build a better society which includes the eradication of Modern Slavery
  • Ensuring that the Society’s tender requirements have a focus on ensuring supplier compliance with all relevant legislation and regulatory requirements including the MSA 2015
  • Operating a supplier Code of Conduct which sets out the Society’s expectations of suppliers across a range of issues including modern slavery which all suppliers are expected to comply with. A copy of our Code of Conduct is available on our website alongside this statement
  • Agreed the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which we believe we can have the greatest impact on as a business
  • Made changes to our operational processes in line with the SDGs and were recognised for them by way of being nominated for several national awards
  • Carried out annual governance reviews on relevant suppliers requiring confirmation of their adherence to modern slavery requirements.

The Society is committed to working closely with our suppliers to develop our approach and confirm our commitment to the identification and abolition of modern slavery. Close engagement with, and understanding of, our supply chain helps us to work collaboratively with our suppliers to share best practice in tackling any potential instances of modern slavery or human trafficking.

This statement was approved on the 28th of March 2023 by the Board of Directors of Skipton Building Society and is signed by:

Stuart Haire, Group Chief Executive. Gwyn Burr, Chair.

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