Modern Slavery Act
Modern Slavery Statement 2021
This statement is made in accordance with the Modern Slavery Act 2015 for our financial year commencing 1st January 2021 and ending 31st December 2021.
Here at Merakilo, we are committed to helping others unlock their full, incredible potential and smash their goals. This is a steadfast vision that we are dedicated to achieving ethically; by adopting certain practices and policies, we aim to both oppose and help to prevent modern slavery and human trafficking in business and supply chains.
Merakilo is a UK based fitness apparel online retailer, manufacturer and brand, supported by customers in 131 countries and highly engaged social media followers.
Merakilo was founded in 2015 and has grown year on year since its conception and is now a worldwide brand that is highly recognizable within the fitness industry. The rapid expansion and growth experienced is due to complete devotion to listening to customers and giving them exactly what they want, when they want it.
The Apparel Function oversees the design, sourcing and development of our products, whilst Brand is responsible for branding, acquisition of customers and our subsequent consumer relationship. The Commercial Function handles buying, trading and supply chains, whilst Operations manages our IT, finance and customer insight duties. The People Function sources and nurtures talent and looks after our employees, whilst our Legal function handles contracts, our intellectual property and other legal aspects concerning the business. The Special Projects team are future-conscious, and always planning ahead.
Our Chief Executive Officer is involved at every level, including when it comes to our zero-tolerance approach to modern slavery, which starts from the top of our organisation with the Board of Directors and underscores everything that we do from sourcing materials to making those all-important deliveries.
Policies and Contractual Controls
All of our products are manufactured by independent contractors. To ensure that all those in our supply chain adhere to our values, product suppliers are required to comply with our Supplier Manual. This manual stipulates a mandatory code of conduct in relation to treatment of their personnel.
This includes the prohibition of forced labour, provision of good working conditions, fair treatment, reasonable rates of pay and working hours, prevention of discrimination, health and safety training and compliance. Following this, we are developing a similar code for our other tier one suppliers.
New suppliers of goods are subject to audits. Provisions are in place in contracts with both new and existing suppliers of goods and relevant services that allow us to audit compliance with our anti-slavery provisions. Audit follow-up actions are encouraged in order to assist our suppliers with improving conditions.
We pride ourselves on the positive work environment we create, and are dedicated to ensuring that all our employees are able to fulfil their potential in an enjoyable workspace. Provisions in our employment contracts prohibit conduct which is discriminatory or considered bullying.
There exists a Work policy against discrimination and harassment, and a Grievance policy through which our staff are expected to help in avoiding inappropriate behaviour. This can be accomplished through employees reporting concerns, to which our management are then expected to act on, investigate and remedy findings.
Our Anti-Slavery Policy reflects our intent to act ethically and with integrity in all business relationships. This includes the implementation and enforcing of effective systems to assess the risks and ultimately, to eliminate slavery and human trafficking in our supply chain network.
We understand that modern slavery is not a static aspect of business, and so have a dedicated compliance team whose responsibility it is to monitor and review risk and controls within the business. This team comprises of personnel from the sourcing team in our Apparel function, the Legal function, the Buying, Trading and Supply Chain teams and our Head of Special Projects. In order to ensure a high level of understanding of the risks of modern slavery and human trafficking in our business, we of course provide training to our staff.
To best assess the effectiveness of the measures we are taking, we will be reviewing the following key performance indicators and reporting on them in future modern slavery statements:
Staff training levels
Steps taken to improve supply chain due diligence checks, audits and follow up procedures
Action taken to measure our suppliers’ compliance with our Code of Conduct, to remedy any shortcomings and to educate our high risk suppliers
Results of any investigations into reports of modern slavery or human trafficking and remedial actions taken
We intend to progressively raise expectations of our product suppliers by evolving the standards in our Code of Conduct.