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SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

Karen Walker is a design company. Our aim is to create beautiful and well-crafted items that will be loved and used for decades. We’re not interested in making lots of items. Just really well designed, well made items. Less and better. We’re niche, boutique and global and we seldom make more than 100 of any particular style of garment. We don’t want to fill your closets and your landfills with more “stuff”. We just want to make beautiful things you’ll love forever.

Our commitment to our social responsibility provides the foundation for all our business. Our core objectives in this respect are: to operate in a responsible and ethical manner in every sense and across all dimensions of our business and to commit to the sustainability of creating unique products that hold their intrinsic value, in the process ensuring we give back value to the environment, culture and communities in every place where our brand has a presence.

Our determination to pursue these aims is expressed in every platform of our corporate culture; in our relations with industry partners and with our contractors and suppliers all along our chain of production. We intend to continue our efforts in development of standards for community and human resources, responsible ethical sourcing and protection of the environment as a reflection of our ethical values. This is where the future of our business lies and we are unwavering in our dedication to establishing a gold standard across these key areas. This commitment to long-term, sustainable growth requires continuous and ongoing evaluation to improve our systems, taking responsibility for operating a business and maintaining a supply chain that respects the planet as well as those living on it.

CODE OF CONDUCT

We have established a clear and stringent Manufacturer's Agreement with a Code of Conduct for Social Compliance.

This Code applies to all aspects of Karen Walker Group. Moreover, before any work is undertaken, all business partners, manufacturers and suppliers of finished goods, as well as cloth, and anyone who undertakes work on our behalf must read, agree to and sign the Agreement.

Our business partners, manufacturers and suppliers are required to respect, foster and promote the safety, dignity and freedom of their employees and to ensure their subcontractors do the same. The Code outlines our position on child labour, involuntary labour, disciplinary practices, discrimination, health and safety, environmental protection, workers' rights, compliance auditing and corrective action taken for violations.

FURTHER INFORMATION

We're currently in the process of updating this page and look forward to sharing further information and findings, and our policies with regard to our people, partners and suppliers, responsible ethical sourcing, compliance auditing, supplier training and protection of the environment with our community.

If you have any questions about our work in these areas in the meantime, please contact karenwalker@karenwalker.com Attn: Social Responsibility Department.

INDUSTRY ORGANISATION PARTNERSHIPS

Karen Walker Group currently works with the following agencies for change:

Child Labor Free

Child Labor Free accreditation certifies that a brand's supply chain, products and manufacturers are child labour free. Karen Walker is fully accredited for our ready-to-wear manufacturing.

United Nations' ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative (EFI) / Artisan.Fashion

United Nations' fashion projects, the EFI and Artisan.Fashion connect artisans from the developing world to the international industry. Workers in the programme earn a living wage under dignified working conditions, with a commitment to minimal environmental impact. Karen Walker has worked with the EFI and Artisan.Fashion continually since 2012 and new collaborations continue. Our 7th collection with the EFI/Artisan.Fashion launched in May 2018.

The Commonwealth Fashion Exchange

Since November 2017, Karen Walker has been participating in the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange, an initiative created to celebrate the talent, power and potential of artisans and designers and encourages new partnerships, trade networks and sustainability. Karen Walker have partnered with Cook Islands artisans to create a completely handcrafted evening gown featuring the art form of traditional Cook Islands tivaivai. Tivaivai is a heritage skill lovingly passed from generation to generation and it’s of upmost importance to our Cook Islands partners that their craft is preserved for generations to come. The gown was unveiled at Buckingham Palace on February 19, 2018 and was included in a public exhibition leading up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in April, followed by the United Nations General Assembly in September. Find out more about the project here.

Community

Breast Cancer Cure

Breast Cancer Cure is New Zealand's only not-for-profit organisation established solely to support research into breast cancer. Breast Cancer Cure is committed to finding a CURE for breast cancer by 2018. Karen Walker has been an ambassador for Breast Cancer Cure (formerly Breast Cancer Research Trust) for over 15 years.

SPCA New Zealand

The SPCA works to advance the welfare of all animals in New Zealand and helps protect animals who are sick, injured, lost, abused or simply abandoned. It is the only charity with the power to prosecute people under the Animal Welfare Act 1999. Karen Walker and its retail stores fundraise for the SPCA throughout the year.

Dove Hospice

Dove Hospice fulfils a unique role, offering free holistic care and support for people with life-threatening or terminal illness from the moment of diagnosis. In June 2018, Karen Walker helped to raise funds for, and awareness of, Dove Hospice's work by hosting a Dove Hospice pop-up store at Karen Walker Newmarket. The pop-up showcased some of the incredible pre-loved gems that can be found in Dove Hospice charity stores and all the money raised from sales went to Dove Hospice. There will be more, seasonal, Dove Hospice x Karen Walker pop-ups to come throughout the year.

Fashion Targets Breast Cancer

Ralph Lauren created Fashion Targets Breast Cancer in 1994 in memory of fashion editor Nina Hyde who died of breast cancer. The campaign has a presence in 14 countries around the world. In 2015 Karen Walker designed the FTBC T-shirt for the Australian campaign, which raised funds for the Garvan Institute of Medical Research and its advancement of breast cancer research. The T-shirt is currently for sale via TheIconic.com.au

Friends of Finn

Friends of Finn works with The Humane Society of The United States to stop the inhumane treatment of dogs in puppy mills. Since its inception in 2010, Friends of Finn has raised more than $1.5 million for puppy mill education and awareness campaigns. Karen Walker is proud to help raise awareness and funds for Friends of Finn.

Make-A-Wish New Zealand

Make-A-Wish's mission is to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions to enrich the human experience with hope, strength and joy. Karen Walker supports Make-A-Wish New Zealand's projects and fundraisers throughout the year.

For charity and sponsorship enquiries please contact:
karenwalker@karenwalker.com