This statement is made pursuant to the relevant legislation (as listed in Annex 1 of this statement) of the territories in which Specsavers International Healthcare Limited and/or its subsidiary companies (Specsavers) operates in. This statement constitutes the slavery and human trafficking statement for Specsavers for its financial year 2020. The board of directors of Specsavers have approved this statement.

Introduction

Slavery remains a reality in the modern world and takes place across the globe, hidden from view. It can affect anyone, of any age, gender or nationality and is not restricted by borders. Specsavers is committed to acting responsibly and trading ethically, and ensuring that the people who make our products are safe, healthy and free from human right abuses.

Our approach

Focusing on specific action that makes a difference remains a priority within Specsavers ongoing business plans. Specsavers is committed to the global ethical trading objectives identified, and to ensuring that regular, independent audits of all major suppliers who do not operate in globally recognised regulatory environments are undertaken. Wherever possible, Specsavers has, and continues to develop strong, long-term relationships with suppliers so that Specsavers can work in partnership with the suppliers and provide best value eyecare and hearing care to everyone.

Our business and supply chain

Specsavers International Healthcare Limited is the Guernsey registered parent company of the Specsavers Group. The Specsavers Group includes subsidiaries which are or support optical retail outlets, audiology stores and domiciliary partnerships throughout the UK, Republic of Ireland, Northern Europe, Australia and New Zealand as well as Specsavers group owned manufacturing and distribution sites.

Identifying and managing risks

Policies and controls

The Specsavers Regulatory and Compliance teams are focused on combatting unethical practices within all areas of the Specsavers business, including any and all product sourcing. Product sourcing includes (but is not limited to) frames, ophthalmic lenses, audiology, contact lenses and solutions, eye drops, uniforms, unitary and equipment. As some of Specsavers suppliers are in medium-risk countries, procedures are in place that actively monitor the treatment of employees and adherence to associated regulations within those medium-risk regions. 

All suppliers are required to adhere to Specsavers Global Ethical Trading Policy or have their own equivalent standard and checks in place.

Increasing transparency

The Specsavers Regulatory and Compliance teams are focused on combatting unethical practices within all areas of the Specsavers business, including any and all product sourcing. Product sourcing includes (but is not limited to) frames, ophthalmic lenses, audiology, contact lenses and solutions, eye drops, uniforms, unitary and equipment. As some of Specsavers suppliers are in medium-risk countries, procedures are in place that actively monitor the treatment of employees and adherence to associated regulations within those medium-risk regions. All suppliers are required to adhere to Specsavers Global Ethical Trading Policy or have their own equivalent standard and checks in place.

Governance

As part of the Specsavers approach to global supply chain governance, Specsavers has developed monthly reporting tools, which enables the Directors to review results and identify risks in relation to modern slavery and ethical compliance, and to support continuous improvement activity. For example, the Procurement and Supply Chain Commercial Operations Director is responsible for reporting to the Specsavers Supply Chain Operating Board on implementation progress, supplier compliance and remediation activities on a monthly basis.

Training and awareness raising

Specsavers recognises the importance of training, raising awareness and embedding knowledge and understanding of human rights, ethical standards and risks across all the Specsavers business functions. In each of its retail outlets, whether optical or audiology reinforcement of the risks of modern slavery is given to all employees and partners. Through forming strong relationships and partnerships with suppliers, Specsavers continues to raise awareness and undertake discussions as to the continued implementation of preventative measures including audit processes, improved policies and agreeing on the standards expected.

Our progress

During 2019 and 2020 we continued to invest in, and develop, the Specsavers team to ensure we have the appropriate skills and resource to deliver the Strategic Plans in relation to regulation and compliance. In particular:

  • The Specsavers team completed 77 supplier audits, for suppliers across the product categories. These audits ensure compliance with our social and environmental standards and adherence to regulatory requirements, enabling long-lasting improvements to be achieved. 

Our 2020/21 plans

In 2020/21, the Specsavers partnership will: 

  • Review and refresh the global ethical trading policy.
  • Enhance the risk measurement and management methods for suppliers and countries that Specsavers trades in, to ensure a robust and dynamic risk approach is taken and measured against.
  • Enhance the business compliance audit approached based on the level of risk of the suppliers.
  • Assess Specsavers audit criteria and process against internationally recognised standards with a view to enhancing the audits and where necessary increase or expand to the highest possible standard. 

Increase the visibility of data to support the business category managers to have conversations with suppliers to ensure they understand the importance Specsavers places on preventing Modern Slavery.

Measuring our progress

Specsavers has committed to adhering to the following key performance indicators to measure the effectiveness of steps taken to tackle modern slavery and human trafficking in the Specsavers business:

  • All scheduled audits completed.

Response to Covid-19

During the Coronavirus pandemic, Specsavers remains committed to continuing to identify and address risks of modern slavery in our operations and supply chains. Within our operations, we have adopted government regulations regarding social distancing and ensuring our workers have the relevant PPE available. We continue to support our suppliers by paying for orders already in production, and therefore attempting to reduce the risk of non-payment of workers. We expect all suppliers to continue to adhere to our ethical trading standards, and our audit programme will continue during 2020/2021.

The board of directors of Specsavers International Healthcare Limited have approved this statement.


Paul Fussey

Director, for and on behalf of SPECSAVERS INTERNATIONAL HEALTHCARE LIMITED