Laing O'Rourke anti-slavery and human trafficking statement for financial year 20/21


This statement is published by Laing O’Rourke Corporation Limited and its subsidiaries and sets out the steps taken by the Laing O’Rourke Group (‘Group’) to prevent modern slavery and human trafficking in our global operations.

About our business

Through its operations around the world, across building and infrastructure sectors, Laing O’Rourke’s 2025 mission will see the business secure its position as the recognised leader for innovation and excellence in the construction industry.

With a heritage that draws on 170 years’ experience and a diverse group of vertically integrated businesses, Laing O’Rourke has helped forge cities, communities and economies.

We attract and develop the very best people. Our 13,000 people across the UK, Australia, and the Middle East deliver engineering innovation, project leadership and certainty for our clients on the world’s most complex and challenging buildings and infrastructure.

More information about Laing O’Rourke can be found here.

Doing the right thing: Our Global Code of Conduct

Our reputation for acting safely and responsibly is critical to running a successful and growing business that generates value for all our stakeholders. Our 2025 mission to become the recognised leader for innovation and excellence in the construction industry requires that we maintain and continue to build our reputation. At Laing O’Rourke we undertake to do business the right way, not business at any price.

This means that everyone directly employed by us is expected to follow the Global Code of Conduct and we require anyone acting or working on our behalf, such as consultants, partners, affiliates, sub-contractors and suppliers, to follow and uphold the intent of the standards set out in the Code.

The Code specifically requires our employees and business partners to observe basic human rights and local labour laws. The latest version of the Code was distributed to all employees in 2019.

A mandatory online Code of Conduct training module is provided to all our monthly-paid staff that must be successfully completed within three months of the start of their employment.

On-site operatives are provided with a ‘tool-box talk’ covering the key elements of the Code to ensure we drive responsible and ethical behaviour into our delivery activities at site level.

Our on-boarding process also includes a requirement for all new employees to read Laing O'Rourke's Modern Slavery Statement.

If anyone feels that a breach of the Code may be taking place, they are encouraged to raise it and we offer a dedicated, confidential whistle-blowing hotline which is independently run with trained operators available 24/7.

The Code outlines our commitment to upholding the human rights of all those who work with us and sets out our compliance with international conventions regarding human rights and enforced or child labour.

Global Code of Conduct

View our code of conduct

“Doing the Right Thing”

Building a strong supply chain

Our suppliers play a vital role in supporting our business activities, and our reputation depends on the quality of the services they deliver. For this reason, we work closely with our trading partners to ensure they share our values. Our supplier relationships are founded on collaboration and respect.

We require our suppliers to comply with all applicable regulations and legislation relating to working hours, wages, welfare and human rights.

We operate a category management approach to our procurement activities for strategic trades, allowing us to form deeper relationships with key vendors throughout our supply chain. Such an approach drives closer collaboration and supports closer alignment to our corporate goals and values.

We also believe in supporting our suppliers through training and knowledge-sharing and hold regular forums to communicate clear expectations.

Governance, due diligence process, vetting and auditing of suppliers

In order for a supplier to work on one of our projects they must first become accredited via our internal vetting processes. This involves the supplier completing a pre-qualification vendor questionnaire to determine whether they have the right policies, processes and procedures in place. As part of this process we require our suppliers to set out their policies and approach to managing modern slavery. We also conduct our own due diligence enquiries using a risk-based approach.

The performance of our suppliers is then monitored and assessed in a number of areas on a quarterly basis to identify any opportunities for improvement or to acknowledge successes at review meetings.

For our more strategic trades and high-risk purchase and subcontract orders, our category teams integrate with the suppliers to develop greater in-depth knowledge of all aspects of their businesses and their upstream supply-chain and where appropriate commission a third party audit.

Human rights and working conditions in key markets

With international operations spanning the UK, UAE, and Australia, Laing O’Rourke remains vigilant to the risk of slavery and human trafficking and recognises that in certain markets the number of workers that are trafficked, exploited and forced to work in the construction industry is rising.

Our direct employment model together with maintaining an integrated internal supply chain wherever possible provides us with more effective control. Of the 13,000 Laing O’Rourke employees, 7,000 people make up our on-site workforce.

Ethics and compliance training

As part of our initiative to identify and mitigate risk, we have established a network of 'Ethics and Compliance Champions' with training support on matters relating to our Code including modern slavery.

Corporate governance framework

We operate within an established and externally benchmarked corporate governance framework that is underpinned by our Mission and Guiding Principles. A key function of our corporate governance framework is the identification, management and mitigation of operational and financial risks. More about our approach can be seen here.

As outlined throughout this Statement, our Global Code of Conduct provides us and our partners with the guidance we all need to do the right thing.

We have also reviewed the governance and controls that are in place to identify and prevent the risks of modern slavery arising in our global activities.

Next steps

To ensure that we are successful in preventing slavery or human trafficking in any of our supply chains, we will continually review relationships with all suppliers and will assess any concerns of slavery or human trafficking on a case-by-case basis.

Our approach to modern slavery and human trafficking risk will continue to evolve and we will continue to mitigate these risks through the provisions mentioned above during 2020 and beyond.

This statement is also published in compliance with the UK Modern Slavery Act (Act).[1]

This statement has been approved by the Board of Directors of Laing O’Rourke Corporation Limited.

Madeleine Loughrey Grant

GROUP DIRECTOR OF LEGAL AND TAX

OCTOBER 2020

[1] Relevant Group subsidiaries in scope of the Act’s disclosure requirement are as follows: Select Plant Hire Co Ltd; Laing O'Rourke Infrastructure Ltd; Expanded Ltd; Laing O’Rourke Construction Ltd; Crown House Technologies Ltd; and Laing O’Rourke Services Ltd