Through our Ethical Sourcing Program, Princess Polly aims to ensure all workers are respected, safe and healthy. However, we can’t achieve this goal without considering the unique experience of women in our supply chain and responding to their needs. We believe that women and men should be treated fairly according to their respective needs, while recognising that we have an opportunity to uplift the women who create products for Princess Polly and are present in the communities adjacent to our factories.
Taking guidance from our numerous touchpoints with factory managers and workers, including our worker sentiment surveys, Supplier Assessment Questionnaires, audit results and insights from industry thought leaders, we have collaboratively built our Gender Equality Policy. This focuses on assessing our current practices and experiences and creating strategies for improvement. One of the first steps we took was recognising ways our practices have the potential to disadvantage women and rectifying this through our Code of Conduct.
As of November 2023, Princess Polly works with 71 factories, with 6100 workers, and 64 mills, with 4800 workers, where 6000 (55%) of whom are women. Women are well represented in senior positions; 34% of factory supervisors and 34% of factory managers are female, and 46% of promotions went to women. Women are also well represented on worker committees, accounting for 39% of members. We are also in the process of surveying each worker at the factories and mills we work with. Of the 69 surveys we’ve done so far:
- 97% of women are comfortable talking directly to a supervisor at work
- 93% of women workers are clear on wage calculation
- 92% of women recommend their facility as a good place to work
On the other hand, only six people took maternity and paternity leave in the past year. We’re working with our factories to learn more about this.
Princess Polly has teamed up with HERproject, which is an initiative run by Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) that develops tailor-made workplace education programs that empower women in supply chains. In 2022, we launched a locally tailored HERhealth program with 25 factories to educate women with information and access to services they need to maintain their health; today 16 factories are half-way through completing this program. In addition to education, the 10-month program aims to improve self-esteem, confidence and strengthen workplace policies to support worker well-being further. By 2025, we will further empower 3000 women in our supply chain communities by providing training on work and life skills. We celebrate all gender identities, and are specifically working towards Sustainable Development Goal number 5 (SDG5), which aims to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls by 2030.