Ethical Trading Initiative

River Island Statement 23.9.13

“Following careful consideration and on-going discussions with the relevant parties, River Island has reviewed the principles of the Bangladesh Accord and has signed the agreement. Our objective throughout has been to establish a long-term framework for improving working conditions in the countries that we produce in. We feel the Accord is the best vehicle to bring about significant changes to the region. The final details of the Accord are still being established and we look forward to working closely with the Accord members to put the plan into action.


At River Island we work actively with our suppliers and official agencies around the world in safeguarding and improving the rights and working conditions of workers in those factories which supply our products.

All of our suppliers are contractually committed to our World Wide Ethical Policy and those that violate the policies as set out in our suppliers manual jeopardise any future relationship and entitle River Island to terminate current contracts.

Our World Wide Ethical Policy will continue to form the cornerstone of the way we do business. To support this policy, our buying and technical teams regularly visit our factories throughout the year and actively engage with our manufacturing partners and other key stakeholders in identifying areas for improvement. This process is further backed by continuous and extensive third-party independent auditing by internationally recognised auditing companies.

Today our products are manufactured across the globe, in countries with diverse cultures and often with established complex economies. Whilst we acknowledge that there are still issues associated with operating in developing countries, we also recognise that many ethical and trading issues cannot be solved overnight. However, we strongly believe that gradual, sustainable and significant change is an achievable goal and we believe that with a wider collaboration of efforts we can influence change greater than any individual initiatives.

In June 2008 River Island became a member of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI). Established in 1998 the ETI is an alliance of companies, trade union organisations and non-governmental organisations committed to working together to identify and promote good practice in the implementation of codes of labour practice. It is about initiating change and tackling the difficult issues involved in global manufacturing today. The ETI has more than 50 member companies and nearly 38,000 suppliers who collectively employ more than six million workers around the world.

Code of Practice

River Island is firmly committed to the adoption and integration of the ETI Base Code into our World Wide Ethical Policy, throughout our global supply chain and into our core business activities. We feel that by working with the ETI and its other members we will be able to draw on the wider pool of experience which exists in the collective organisation.

The ETI Base Code key principles:

- Employment is freely chosen.
- Freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining are respected.
- Working conditions are safe and hygienic.
- Child labour shall not be used.
- Living wages are paid.
- Working hours are not excessive.
- No discrimination is practised.
- Regular employment is provided.
- No harsh or inhumane treatment is allowed.

For more information on the ETI and the ETI Base Code please follow these links:-
ETI Website and ETI Base Code