Human Rights Policy
Express is dedicated to respecting and protecting global human rights across every part of our business operations, internal practices, and broader community. Our commitment to human rights is based on the same values that drive our business operations: accountability, courage, collaboration, and a focus on results.
Our Human Rights Policy, as well as our Sourcing and Labor Standards and Supplier Code of Conduct, reflects our commitment to supporting communities of all kinds and creating opportunities throughout our value chain for our employees, customers, vendors, production partners, and other stakeholders. We expect our suppliers and vendors to respect and adhere to parameters of these policies, which were developed in alignment with the ILO’s Core Conventions, the OECD’s Guidelines for Multi-National Enterprises, and the United Nations’ Declaration of Human Rights and Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. We are proactive in choosing production partners and vendors that align with our core values and adhere to our human rights policy as well as globally recognized standards.
The Express Board of Directors, under the direction of the Compensation and Governance Committee, reviews and makes recommendations around ESG initiatives to support Express as a public company. The Compensation and Governance Committee maintains ESG oversight regarding key decision points. The Executive Leadership Team (ELT) ESG Committee provides oversight and direction to ESG initiatives. Our ESG and social responsibility cross-functional teams are responsible for creating and implementing social and environmental programs and applying these policies and standards throughout business operations.
Express is dedicated to working with vendors and production partners who share our commitment to transparency.
Express requires that the people who create our products are provided safe, voluntary, and non-discriminatory working conditions. Our teams communicate regularly with our suppliers, conducting extensive due diligence before, and throughout our business relationship. Suppliers are evaluated through a third-party auditing firm to identify and mitigate any non-compliance with the Express Code of Conduct and international standards. Express conducts social compliance audits via our third-party partner to screen for human rights and labor practices that align with Express expectations. We require worker interviews to be conducted in our audits to check for alignment with our Code of Conduct and Sourcing and Labor Standards, and that factories provide grievance mechanisms to allow workers a voice in operations. We work to remediate any identified non-compliance through corrective action plans and re-audits. Our team engages with vendors and suppliers regularly to monitor progress of corrective action plans and factory operations.
Express supply chain partners are regularly trained on both human rights topics and best practices and are required to adhere to our Code of Conduct. The policies outlined in our Code of Conduct prohibit the use of forced labor, child labor, abuse or harassment. Express requires that maximum working hours, minimum wage, and other benefits offered to factory workers are aligned with local laws and regulations, and that suppliers identify and comply with all local laws. The Express Code of Conduct requires freedom of association. Across all company operations, Express is committed to protecting the rights of women and underrepresented communities by requiring that they are not discriminated against and receive equal pay opportunities. We prioritize the health and safety of garment workers by screening for factors such as building integrity, protective equipment, access to clean drinking water and proper sanitation systems.
Express focuses on assessing and improving our human rights and labor program to pace with evolving industry best practices and knowledge. We will continue reviewing, updating, and sharing this Policy to reflect our operations and remain consistent and transparent in alignment with our business values.