At Portland, we recognise our success as an organisation comes in part from developing strong business partnerships which reflect our commitment to acting with integrity and in accordance with high ethical and operational standards.
The purpose of this Code of Conduct (“Code”) is to communicate Portland’s core values which are that any party which engages with Portland should operate in an ethically, socially and environmentally responsible manner. The Code is intended to assist suppliers to recognise areas of ethical risk and provide guidance as how such risks must be managed.
It outlines our expectations as to how our suppliers will operate. While the Code is not intended to replace, supercede or conflict with any express contractual obligations, or any applicable legal and/or regulatory requirements, it is expected that all suppliers working with Portland will comply with the spirit of the Code across all markets and jurisdictions within which that supplier operates.
Suppliers are expected to have proportionate management systems in place that allow them to demonstrate their compliance with the Code. Portland reserves the right to require suppliers to demonstrate their compliance with the Code from time to time.
1. General Requirements
1.1 Legal compliance
Suppliers will comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations in the countries where they carry out business activities. To the extent reasonable and proportionate, Suppliers will comply with the Code even if it stipulates a higher standard than required by national laws or regulations.
1.2 Management systems
Suppliers should have adequate management systems and controls in place to ensure compliance with the Code. The functioning and quality of the supplier’s management system should be in proportion to the size, complexity and risk environment of its business.
Suppliers will undertake appropriate due diligence into any parties in their supply chain to ensure that such parties comply with the principles and standards set out in the Code.
Suppliers will take all reasonable steps to ensure that all parties in their supply chains comply in principle with the Code. Suppliers should have in place proportionate systems to monitor such compliance.
On request, the Supplier will be able to inform Portland which sub-suppliers they use, and demonstrate that these are required to comply the provisions in the Code.
1.4 Disaster Recovery Plan
Suppliers will have in place a disaster recovery plan designed to minimise the impact on Portland and its clients of any incident that affects Supplier’s business. Such plan will be reviewed and tested regularly in accordance with best practice.
2. Human Rights and Labour Rights
Suppliers will respect internationally proclaimed human rights both in the workplace and more broadly in all their business activities.
Requirements related to Supplier’s personnel in the Code will apply to all the Suppliers’ workers including temporary, migrant, student and contract workers as well as direct employees. All workers will have the right to enter into and to terminate their employment freely.
Suppliers will take measures to avoid causing, contributing or being linked to negative human rights impacts.
2.1 Child labour and authorized minors
Suppliers will actively work against all forms of child labour. Unless local law stipulates a higher age limit, no person younger than the age for completing compulsory education or younger than 15 will be employed. For authorized minors, management is responsible for providing age-appropriate working conditions, hours of work and wage, in compliance with applicable local law.
Suppliers will ensure proper management of student workers through proper maintenance of student records, rigorous due diligence of educational partners, and protection of students’ rights in accordance with applicable law and regulations.
2.2 Forced Labour and human trafficking
Suppliers will not participate in, or benefit from any form of forced labour, including bonded labour, involuntary prison labour, slavery, servitude, trafficking or work performed under the menace of a penalty or coercion. All work, including overtime work, will be voluntary and workers will be free to leave work or terminate their employment with reasonable notice.
Suppliers will not require that workers hand over government-issued identification, passports or work permits to be kept by the Supplier as a condition of employment.
2.3 Health and safety of employees
Suppliers will provide a safe and healthy working environment in accordance with applicable local law as a minimum. The Supplier should take appropriate action to prevent, and manage, potential workplace accidents and illnesses.
Portland recognizes and respects diversity and cultural differences. Suppliers’ workers will be treated strictly according to his or her abilities and qualifications in any employment decisions, including but not limited to hiring, advancement, compensation, benefits, training, layoffs and termination.
Illegitimate grounds for discrimination include but are not limited to: race, colour, gender, age, language, property, nationality or national origin, religion, ethnic or social origin, caste, economic grounds, disability, pregnancy, belonging to an indigenous people, trade union affiliation, political opinion, sexual orientation.
2.5 Harassment, harsh or inhumane treatment
Suppliers will ensure that no worker is subject physical, sexual, psychological or verbal harassment, intimidation or abuse.
2.6 Disciplinary practices
Disciplinary actions by Suppliers will be conducted in a manner to ensure the fair and humane treatment of workers. No worker will be subject to corporal punishment. Progressive disciplinary action will be applied.
2.7 Working hours
Portland recognizes the need for a healthy balance between work and free time. Suppliers’ workers will not, on a regularly scheduled basis, be required to work a standard workweek of more than 48 hours per week or a total workweek of more than 60 hours (including overtime). Except in extraordinary business circumstances. All workers will be entitled to at least one day off in every seven-day period.
2.8 Compensation and benefits
Suppliers will ensure that, wages, including overtime compensation and benefits, equal or exceed the level required by applicable law. Portland encourages consideration of the cost for meeting basic needs of the workers and their families, as part of defining wage levels.
2.9 Freedom of association and collective bargaining
Suppliers’ workers will be free to exercise their legal rights to form, join, or refrain from joining organizations representing their interests as employees. No worker will be subject to intimidation or harassment in his or her peaceful exercise of these rights. The workers’ right to collectively bargain will be respected.
In situations where the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining is restricted by applicable laws and regulations, Portland expects suppliers to allow alternate forms of worker representations.
3. Material Compliance
Suppliers will make reliable determination of the origin and source of materials in products, parts or components supplied to Portland and ensure that the sourcing does not directly or indirectly contribute to human right abuses and/or environmental damage in conflict-affected and high-risk areas.
4. Business Ethics
Suppliers will conduct business in compliance with all applicable national and international laws and regulations and adhere to internationally agreed standards of business ethics.
Suppliers must not engage in or tolerate any form of corruption, bribery, extortion or embezzlement. Suppliers must not offer or accept any benefits or other means to obtain any undue or improper advantage. Such improper benefits may comprise cash, non-monetary gifts, pleasure trips or services and amenities of any other nature.
4.2 Tax Evasion
Suppliers must not engage in or tolerate any form of tax evasion.
4.3 Conflict of interest
Suppliers will avoid conflicts of interest that may compromise the Supplier’s credibility or other exterior parties’ confidence in Portland. Suppliers will disclose to Portland whenever a situation arises in which there appears to be a conflict of interest involving or affecting Portland or its underlying clients in relation to the work the Supplier is undertaking for Portland.
4.4 Fair competition
Suppliers will respect and comply with all applicable competition laws and regulations and not enter into discussions or agreements with competitors concerning pricing, market sharing or other similar activities.
4.5 Protection of third-party rights and information
Suppliers must respect Portland and its clients’ intellectual property rights and protect Portland and its clients’ information by safeguarding it against misuse, theft, fraud or improper disclosure.
4.6 Compliance with export controls
Suppliers will comply with applicable export control laws and regulations and ensure that goods are not exported in contradiction with the same, including but not limited to applicable national, European or U.S laws and regulations.
Further, the Suppliers will comply with applicable sanctions laws and economic sanctions programs administered by the EU, U.S. or other applicable sanction regime. Suppliers may not undertake any activity, or cause or require Portland to undertake any activity that could result in Portland violating any of the abovementioned export control and/or sanction laws and regulations.
4.7 Environmental protection
Suppliers will operate in full compliance with applicable environmental legislation. A management system will be in place, aimed to continuously improve the Supplier´s environmental standards and performance.
4.8 Data Protection and Information Security
Suppliers will comply with all data protection laws and requirements (including the UK GDPR) when processing any personal data on behalf of Portland or any of its clients.
Suppliers shall have in place appropriate measures to:
(a) protect the integrity and confidentiality of information (including information belonging to or supplied by Portland) held on its systems (which include physical and online or electronic systems); and
(b) ensure that there is no unauthorised access of the information by third parties, including Supplier’s personnel and representatives
6. Monitoring and compliance
Suppliers are responsible for regular and documented monitoring and review of the compliance with the Code by all their business units. Suppliers are also responsible for maintaining adequate documentation to demonstrate compliance across its supply chain.
As a condition of doing business with Portland, Suppliers must permit Portland and its designated agents (including third parties) to perform audits, including confidential employee interviews.
Suppliers will promptly inform Portland of any breach of, or deviation from, the Code and will demonstrate to Portland’s reasonable satisfaction that an appropriate corrective action plan has been implemented.
Lack of cooperation, repeated and severe violations of the Code and/or applicable laws may result in an end to the business relationship with Portland.
In the context of our business relationship, if you or your employees believe that the terms of this Code are not being adhered to either by a Supplier or Portland, please inform your point of contact at Portland. Alternatively, concerns can be addressed to the Portland Legal team at [email protected].
7. Variations to the Code
Portland reserves the right to modify the Code from time to time. Portland acknowledges that any changes it makes to the Code should be commercial reasonable and for the purpose of ensuring the Code continues to uphold compliance with high ethical, societal and environmental standards.
Updated versions of the Code will be published at www.portland-communications.com and Supplier acknowledges that it should check this website regularly.