Ethical Sourcing

Oxford aims to make a positive difference to its people, environment and the communities in which it operates by enthusiastically embracing the following initiatives:

Sourcing Principles Agreement

Oxford seeks to ensure that its products are created in good working conditions. This supports the company's core principles of providing its own workforce with meaningful jobs and providing customers with high quality products.

Oxford and its suppliers have found that when people are treated with respect, have decent working conditions and fair rates of pay then both the individuals and their companies benefit from increased commitment and greater productivity. Customers also benefit from goods offering enhanced quality and superior value.

Achieving this objective has come through the development of agreed standards between the company and suppliers, a regular pattern of factory visitation and a policy of continual improvement.

As a large Australian retail chain selling a broad range of products, Oxford now works with many different suppliers from across the globe. Most of Oxford's suppliers have suppliers of their own, who in turn may themselves be supplied by others. That said, all subcontracted production adheres to code standards at final stage of production. Oxford has undertaken the publication of its company-wide Sourcing Doctrine Agreement combining a quality and ethical auditing protocol. Together with SGS and  SEDEX (commissioned by Contracted Oxford Supplier), Oxford conducts social and ethical trade audits every 2 years to ensure supplier conformity to a broad range of critieria.

These principles clearly require all direct suppliers to ensure their facilities accord with what Oxford believe to be acceptable standards. The company will enforce these principles firmly among direct suppliers and encourage their implementation further down the supply chain.

Workforce Rights

The people working as suppliers to Oxford are to be treated with respect and dignity. Their health, safety and basic human rights are always to be protected and promoted. Each supplier must, as a minimum, fully comply with all relevant local and national laws and regulations, particularly with regard to:

  • Working hours and conditions, rates of pay and terms of employment

  • Minimum age of employment

Moreover, whatever the local regulations workers be at least 16 years of age as a norm and they should be free to join lawful trade unions or worker's associations.

  • No Child Labour

Children and young persons under the age of 18 shall not be employed at night or in hazardous conditions.

  •  Employment is freely chosen

There shall be no forced, bonded or involuntary prison labour. Workers must not be required to lodge 'deposits' on commencement of employment and must be free to leave their employer after reasonable notice.

  •  No Discrimination

There must be no discrimination in hiring, compensation, access to training, promotion, termination or retirement based on race, nationality, religion, age, disability, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, union or political membership

  •  Wages and benefits of employment

Wages and benefits paid for a standard working week must meet, as a minimum, national legal requirements or industry benchmark standards, whichever is higher. Wages should cover the need to meet both basic needs and some discretionary income. All workers should be provided with written information about their employment conditions and wages before employment and provided with wage notification for each pay period. Deductions from wages as a disciplinary measure is not permitted other than those required by law.

  •  Discipline

Employee abuse in physical, sexual or verbal form of intimidation is not acceptable and prohibited.

  •  Health and safety

A safe, clean and hygienic environment should be provided, taking into account the specific hazards of the industry. Adequate steps are taken to prevent accidents and injury to health at work. Workers should receive regular and recorded health and safety training. All workers should have access to clean toilet facilities and drinking water. A senior manager should be appointed as the Health and Safety representative for the company.

  •  Environment

Suppliers should ensure they are treating the local environment with respect, and meet all the relevant local and national regulations.

  •  Climate Change

Our retail sites, offices and distribution centre are utilized to high energy performance criteria and environmental specifications. We will do whatever possible to invest in renewable energy sources.

Oxford is undertaking a review of its transport policy to minimise its carbon footprint.  We will do our utmost to develop products from sustainable or renewable sources wherever possible.

  •  Reducing Waste

Packaging goods is vital, both to reduce waste by protecting products from damage and to communicate important information to customers. Oxford is committed to using recycled material, and helping you to recycle, wherever possible. The packaging used for our products will be reduced and where possible, made more environmentally friendly. Additionally, Oxford will maximise the utilisation of fabrics so as to further reduce waste

  •  Fair partners

We will only work with partners who share our ethical values and have agreed to sign our Sourcing Doctrine Agreement.

  •  Community Involvement

Oxford is committed to introducing a policy which will allow employees to have paid time off or funding to assist the local community and other charity projects and will review our charity funding policy and introduce ways for employees to contribute to charity

Commitment to Extending Principles through the Supply Chain

Oxford would like its suppliers to adopt similar principles in dealing with those who, in turn, supply them. Suppliers must not only apply these principles at all times, but must also be able to show they are doing so. Oxford will take action against suppliers who do not comply, which may involve cancelling their orders and/ or ceasing to trade.

Oxford will continue to assess its business and supply chains to identify potential risks and to then target those areas with policies, procedures and training to ensure it maintains appropriate safeguards against mistreatment of persons within its own business and supply chains.