About us

Modern Slavery Statement

Introduction

This statement, made on behalf of the Walker Group, is published in accordance with the Modern Slavery Act 2015. Walker fully supports the Act and the need for transparency and accountability within businesses regarding action taken to combat the crime and civil wrongs in this area. We, at Walker, continue to commit to conducting business to the highest ethical standards and take our responsibility to respect human rights seriously. We do not tolerate modern slavery or human trafficking anywhere in our organisation or in any of our supply chains. This statement, for the financial year ending 31 December 2017, sets out what we are doing to eliminate, as far as possible, the risk of modern slavery and human trafficking taking place.

Who we are and what we do

The Walker Group includes Walker Books Ltd, Walker Books Australia, Candlewick Press Inc and Walker Productions. We are one of the world’s leading independent publishers of books and content for children. Our ownership structure includes employees worldwide together with authors and illustrators. Our focus is on children and we endeavour to enrich their lives through the products we produce. The need for a rigorous and responsible attitude to ensure that what we do in no way harms, prejudices or enables people to exploit anyone involved in the publishing process is never underestimated and is at the forefront of how we conduct our business.

Our supply chains

Walker is a founding member of the Publishers Resolution for Ethical International Manufacturing Standards (“PRELIMS”). All our product suppliers are required to work towards the standards set out in the PRELIMS Code of Conduct and part of the process involves them actively engaging in compliance audits. The standards our suppliers have to commit to cover subject areas such as child labour, discipline, forced labour, discrimination, wages, hours, freedom of association and collective bargaining. They also include standards relating to health and safety and the environment. New suppliers are required to provide valid audits before we agree to engage with them.

As part of our business, in addition to producing our own books and related materials, we license others to produce products using our brands. Those merchandising licensees are required to adhere to the standards as set out in the Walker Code of Conduct.

Within our organisation itself, we do not discriminate and ensure all staff are treated fairly and equally. We have adopted a green approach to the way our offices are run and will purchase fairtrade products wherever possible.

Our policies and procedures

Walker has a number of policies and procedures that go towards ensuring there is no modern slavery or human trafficking within our organisation or with the suppliers we use. These include our recently updated environmental policy. As far as our staff are concerned, we endeavour to ensure that pay and conditions, together with benefits, are appropriately managed and monitored against market conditions, and comply with relevant employment legislation.

What next
Our review and updating of procedures and policies in this area is ongoing, both as regards our external business partners and suppliers, but also our employees. In addition to the training undertaken by members of our production team, other staff will be given training relevant to their areas, and their views and suggestions regarding where there is room for improvement, and how we can achieve that, will be listened to.

The Walker Code of Conduct is being updated and consideration given as to how its application might be extended to other business partners, or whether our contractual templates require any relevant changes.

This statement has been approved by the Board of Directors of Walker.

Karen Lotz
Group MD

Last updated on 29/01/19 at 14:06:45
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