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What are ethical and sustainable work practices

Businesses that don’t understand and apply ethical and sustainable work practices are risking their future financial viability.

Ethical and sustainable work practices explained

This guidance on ethical and sustainable work practices focusses on labour and human rights, and in this context:

  • Ethical means engaging in work practices that are legal, fair and ensure decent treatment of your workforce, by providing conditions that do not cause physical or mental harm to workers. This includes at least meeting minimum employment standards.
  • Sustainable means engaging in work practices that meet current needs in a durable and lasting way that does not compromise the future of your business and/or industry. 

There is increasing demand for ethical and sustainable work practices in response to incidents of global worker exploitation that includes: wage underpayments, harmful working conditions, child labour, forced labour, human trafficking, and modern slavery.

Demand for ethical and sustainable work practices

Key terms for you to understand: 

Page last revised: 03 July 2020

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