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TMCNet:  Latest Business Charter signatories named

[June 19, 2014]

Latest Business Charter signatories named

(M2 PressWIRE Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) A new group of firms from Birmingham and beyond have been recognised by the city council for their efforts to maximise social value from their day-to-day business operations.

The latest Birmingham Business Charter for Social Responsibility awards presentation ceremony was staged at Pinsent Masons' offices in the city centre today (June 19).

A total of 12 organisations were presented with certificates in recognition of having had accepted action plans detailing how they will deliver benefits to Birmingham through the charter's six principles.

Those honoured today join 24 firms and organisations that received charter accreditation earlier this year.

Cllr Stewart Stacey, Cabinet Member for Commissioning, Contracting and Improvement at Birmingham City Council, said: "I am delighted we have reached the stage where we can recognise another wave of organisations that are setting the standard for ethical business practices in this city.


"The Birmingham Business Charter for Social Responsibility is a standard for organisations to aspire to. When obtained, it confirms to the wider community that the firm in question conducts itself in the right way as far as its own employees, suppliers and the environment is treated.

"We spend approximately 1billion annually so want to get as much extra value as possible for our citizens and the charter will help do this. It is a status on offer to all organisations, regardless of if they currently supply services to the council, and I look forward to many more signatories being announced in the coming months." The 12 organisations honoured today were: 1st Planner Ltd -- supplier of temporary staff in the field of construction consultancy Balfour Beatty -- firm carrying out work on Midland Metro extension and improvements to Golden Square in the Jewellery Quarter Barclays Bank -- provider of banking services to the city council Capita -- firm specialising in business process management and outsourcing solutions CDS -- provider of the council's print management services Core Assets -- provider of Children in Care services Educational Interiors -- provider of educational furniture to schools, academies and colleges Liberata UK Ltd -- online advertising experts, managing advertising space on the city council's website Lloyds Bank -- one of the nation's main "High Street" banks PwC -- multinational professional service network, which offers financial consultancy to other businesses Warrior Doors Limited -- producers of doors for commercial and large residential buildings Wesleyan Assurance Society -- a mutual organisation that has developed a highly successful business model providing tailored financial advice and products to select professional groups, notably GPs, hospital doctors, dentists, teachers and lawyers.

A number of other suppliers are on the verge of approving action plans to implement the charter and further celebration ceremonies will be staged in the coming months.

More information on the charter and a full list of signatories can be viewed at www.finditinbirmingham.com/charter ENDS For more media information please contact Kris Kowalewski on 0121 303 3621 About the Birmingham Business Charter for Social Responsibility The Birmingham Business Charter for Social Responsibility is a set of guiding principles to which Birmingham City Council will adhere and which it will invite its contracted suppliers, the wider business community, other public sector bodies (including schools), and third sector organisations (including grant recipients), to adopt.

Charter signatories will consider and describe how they can improve the economic, social and environmental well-being of Birmingham that result from their activities. Organisations tendering for council contracts as of September 2013 will have to adopt the charter. Existing contractors are also invited to do the same. The charter, once adopted, becomes a contractual term: that is, failure to perform their action plan could see them stripped of their contract in the same way as if they failed to, say, pay the council rent for their premises.

A full charter award is where a business is ready to commit to and deliver against the full requirements of the charter. A "working towards" award is presented when a non-contracting company is not able to commit to the full set of requirements, but is working towards achieving them. There is a three-year period during which a company can move from "working towards" to full certification.

Where a pre-September 2013 contract involves multiple parties such as PFI arrangements (e.g. the highways maintenance contract), a separate agreement is signed to govern the charter adoption. In this case, failure to deliver against the action plan, after usual efforts to rectify, will result in the embarrassing withdrawal of the charter certification but not the contract itself. Any part-completed actions must be completed or costs reimbursed such that another party can complete them.

Charter Principles Local Employment -- Charter signatories will create employment and training opportunities for local people especially in target areas Buy Birmingham First -- Charter signatories will take account of the social and economic impacts of buying locally when commissioning and contracting, thereby reducing unemployment and raising the skill level of the local workforce. This means advertising procurement opportunities through www.finditinbirmingham.com Partners in Communities -- Charter signatories will play an active role in the local community and community support organisations, especially in those areas and communities with the greatest need Good Employer -- Charter signatories will support staff development and welfare and adopt the Birmingham Living Wage Green and Sustainable -- Charter signatories will commit to protecting the environment, minimising waste and energy consumption and using other resources efficiently Ethical Procurement -- Charter signatories will commit to employing the highest ethical standards in their own operations and those within their supply chain .

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