Supporting human rights
UN Global Compact (UNGC) Principle 1: Businesses should support and respect the protection of international human rights within their sphere of influence.
TELUS has a long-standing commitment to respecting and protecting human rights as outlined in our Ethics policy and reflected in our respectful workplace, employment equity and diversity practices.
The TELUS Ethics policy ties together all policies regulating business behaviour and provides guidelines for the standards of ethical conduct by all team members, including officers and members of the TELUS Board of Directors, wherever we conduct business. The Ethics policy formalizes our commitment to safeguard internationally proclaimed human rights. The policy is updated annually and posted on TELUS’ internal and external websites. Team members are required to complete the updated ethics course annually. Further details are provided for team members in the Respectful Workplace policy, which also applies at all sites where business activities are undertaken for TELUS.
In addition to complying with these two policies, TELUS International follows local legislation that protects human rights in all international jurisdictions where we operate. TELUS International delivers contact centre, IT and business process outsourcing solutions in multiple locations and languages to both TELUS and global companies. These contact centres are located in various countries including the Philippines, two Central American nations and the U.S.
Each year, TELUS requires its team members and contractors to complete an online training course that outlines key aspects of the Ethics, Respectful Workplace, Security and privacy policies. Entitled Integrity 2011, the course was completed by all team members and over 90 per cent of contractors. Also, TELUS has implemented specific training based upon its Respectful Workplace policy.
Appropriate management control processes are in place to monitor Company practices. Collective agreements set out the steps of the grievance and arbitration processes available to team members covered by such agreements. Internal complaints about respectful workplace practices are investigated and addressed by the Respectful Workplace office, which reports quarterly to the Human Resources and Compensation Committee of TELUS’ Board of Directors. The TELUS EthicsLine provides further support to anyone who has ethical questions/issues regarding the Company. Everyone is invited to use the TELUS EthicsLine to anonymously and confidentially ask questions, request support or make a good faith report about a real or perceived violation of the Ethics policy, government law or regulation, questionable business practice or accounting/auditing matter. All reports to the EthicsLine are taken seriously and are addressed by the Ethics office, which reports quarterly to both the Human Resources and Compensation Committee and to the Audit Committee of TELUS’ Board of Directors.
TELUS also finalized our Supplier Code of Conduct in 2011, which sets out social and environmental practices that TELUS business partners must adhere to. The code aligns to the 10 principles of the UNGC and will be implemented in 2012.
With the Supplier Code of Conduct, we strive to award business to suppliers who:
- Demonstrate a strong commitment to sustainable development that aligns with ours
- Ensure the well-being of their employees, contractors and communities by adopting ethical, labour-focused and environmentally friendly principles.
The TELUS Supplier Code of Conduct is based on generally accepted standards of ethical business conduct for all of our suppliers.
We expect our suppliers to:
- Comply with applicable laws and regulations wherever they operate
- Follow recognized standards of behaviour
- Advance social and environmental responsibilities
- Operate consistently with TELUS’ commitment to being a leading corporate citizen
- Ensure their affiliates, suppliers, employees and contractors perform obligations to TELUS that are in line with the ethical standards set out in this code.
UNGC Principle 2: Businesses should make sure that they are not complicit in human rights abuses.
TELUS’ focus on respect in the workplace is an indication of our commitment to creating a positive, professional and safe working environment, and is a cornerstone of our values and culture. When employees respect each other, we improve work relationships, enhance teamwork and increase productivity. In support of this priority, TELUS launched the Respectful Workplace Office in 2004, which oversees our Respectful Workplace policy and works to resolve workplace issues.
Each year, key points from TELUS’ Respectful Workplace policy are covered in the mandatory Integrity training course, including human rights. In addition, all newly hired employees are provided training on the policy. Our overriding goals are to help team members understand the law and what is considered acceptable behaviour in the workplace, as well as the protections and processes available to them should an inappropriate workplace issue arise.
TELUS analyzes complaints filed by team members with the Canadian Human Rights Commission to determine if there are any internal practices that are causing concern and that might require attention.