Modern Slavery Act Statement

Modern Slavery Act Statement


The UK Modern Slavery Act came into force in October 2015 and requires large commercial organisations doing business in the UK to publish a slavery and human trafficking statement of the steps the organisation has taken during the financial year to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in any of its supply chains or in any part of its own business.

The Disasters Emergency Committee has a zero tolerance approach to slavery and human trafficking and is committed to ensuring that slavery and human trafficking are not taking place within its own organisation or its supply chain.

About the Disasters Emergency Committee

The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) brings together 14 leading UK aid agencies to raise money at times of humanitarian crisis in poorer countries. The DEC launches appeals to raise money from the UK public to help those impacted by disasters overseas. Money raised from the appeals is allocated to our member agencies, who are experts in humanitarian aid, based on each member’s ability to deliver aid where it is needed. The DEC is governed by a board of trustees which includes the chief executives of all our members and up to six independent trustees; with a very small permanent staff of 25, the DEC secretariat, to carry out the day-to-day running of the organisation. Along with the support of our media and corporate partners, we form a unique collaborative hub, able to launch appeals and raise funds collectively to tackle some of the world’s most devastating crises.

Given the nature of our business, our supply chain is limited and we consider the risk of slavery or human trafficking occurring in our business or supply chain to be low.

Our Policies and steps taken to address the risk of slavery and human trafficking in our organisation and supply chains

The DEC is committed to ensuring that there is no modern slavery or human trafficking in our supply chains or in any part of our business. We expect all DEC staff, consultants, board members, volunteers and suppliers to act in compliance with all applicable laws including those relating to slavery and human trafficking, and workplace health and safety laws. The DEC’s mission includes a commitment to uphold the highest standards of accountability and transparency. In line with our vision, mission and values, the DEC expects all staff, consultants, board members, volunteers and suppliers to conduct themselves in a manner that prioritises wellbeing and preserves the dignity, respect and equality of every individual, including people affected by crises for which the DEC raises funds. Our policies reflect that expectation and we expect the same high standards of our consultants, volunteers and suppliers.

All DEC staff, consultants, board members, volunteers and suppliers regardless of location are required to comply with the DEC’s Code of Conduct which sets out the expectations which the DEC has in relation to the behaviour and attitude of those individuals to their work, to each other and to the DEC, as well as the principles of the charity's working culture and public relations. Among other things, the Code of Conduct requires those subject to it to follow the fundamental values and principles of the DEC including to (i) respect the dignity and worth of every individual and to be in keeping with the DEC’s Equal Opportunity and Diversity policy; (ii) treat all people with dignity and abide by the DEC’s Dignity at Work policy; (iii) refrain from engaging in any activity which may be exploitative or intimidating and be in line with the DEC’s Prevention of Sexual Harassment policy; (iv) adhere to the Health and Safety policy of the organisation and to any security and specific in-country policies and procedures of each partner and country of work/visit; and (v) comply with all employment policies and procedures and other applicable DEC’s policies and procedures. DEC staff, volunteers and consultants receive training on the Code of Conduct. To ensure all those in our contractors and suppliers comply with our values, the DEC is committed to ensuring that the policies and practices for the management of our suppliers are aligned to the Code of Conduct.

DEC issues an operating manual which outlines standards to which the member agencies adhere, including the policies and practices described above. Oversight of the member agencies is undertaken by the Membership and Accountability sub-committee of the Board of Trustees.