At Carter’s, we believe that the manufacture of our products should be performed in an ethical and socially responsible manner, and that the people who manufacture our products should be treated with dignity and respect. As part of this belief, Carter’s
established a Code of Ethics as the foundation for how we conduct our business. It is a guide to help make business decisions with integrity and in a manner consistent with our values, our policies, and the law. Carter’s associates, including our
business partners, vendors, and suppliers are required to adhere with our Code of Ethics.
Carter’s also established a Social Responsibility Policy, which prohibits human rights abuses, such as human trafficking, forced labor, slave labor, physical abuse, restricting worker’s freedom
of movement, illegal child labor, and many other aspects of worker welfare. Suppliers are required to contractually agree to follow the Policy and to ensure that their sub-suppliers comply as well. This Policy also requires suppliers to comply with
local laws in the countries where they operate.
In accordance with the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act, summarized below are some of the actions we are taking within our supply chain.
In addition to our Code of Ethics and Social Responsibility Policy that our suppliers contractually agree to follow, Carter’s implemented a supplier onboarding program, which outlines the requirements for existing and new suppliers. As part of this
onboarding program, Carter’s evaluates the background, reputation, quality, social compliance and other factors of each new supplier prior to engagement.
Factory audits are performed throughout the year as described below, and periodic strategy meetings are held between relevant departments to discuss supplier compliance, performance, and sourcing strategy. Additionally, relevant Carter’s stakeholders
periodically review and evaluate our entire sourcing strategy to identify areas of increased risk, such as political instability, unfavorable economic conditions, international events, and new foreign regulations to identify potential issues,
and then we adjust our plans and audits accordingly.
Since we do not own any of the factories that produce our merchandise, regular audits are conducted to verify that a supplier is complying with our Policy as well as to strengthen working conditions and labor practices in factories. We contract
with an accredited and internationally recognized audit provider to execute these audits. Audits are conducted on an announced and semi-unannounced basis, and we retain the right to conduct unannounced audits at any time. Generally, we conduct
about 400 audits in 20 countries each year. Carter’s employees who visit suppliers are also asked to assess conditions informally while on location and report back any concerns.
Once a factory is audited an assessment rating is assigned, which is based on a number of factors including the frequency, severity, and probability of the finding. The assigned rating determines the timeframe for remediation. For major violations,
we require immediate remediation and reserve the right to issue penalties and/or terminate the business relationship. For non-major violations, we prefer to work with suppliers to address our concerns rather than terminating the relationship as
such action is unlikely to correct the underlying issue(s) and may cause further hardship on those who depend upon the employment. If a supplier fails to demonstrate improvement, we reserve the right to terminate the business relationship with
All our suppliers are contractually required to follow our Code of Ethics and Social Responsibility Policy. Additionally, as part of our supplier onboarding program, suppliers are required to certify that materials incorporated into their products
comply with our Policy, including all applicable laws regarding slavery and human trafficking of the country or countries in which they are doing business. At our periodic supplier conferences, all our suppliers are reminded of and updated on
any changes to our Code of Ethics and Social Responsibility Policy. The Audit section provides descriptions of the consequences for suppliers who do not comply.
Carter’s associates are required to adhere to our Code of Ethics, with training and certification of compliance conducted when hired and periodically thereafter. All allegations of violations of the Code of Ethics are investigated and appropriate
responsive action taken. Carter’s also maintains internal accountability standards and procedures for employees and contractors failing to meet company standards, and if any employee or contractor is found to be non-compliant in these areas, prompt
corrective action must be taken by the employee or contractor. Regardless of the corrective action taken, Carter’s reserves the right to terminate any employee or contractor that does not comply with our Code of Ethics or Social Responsibility
Code of Ethics training and certification of compliance are conducted when all Carter’s employees are hired and periodically thereafter. Additionally, our Corporate Social Responsibility, Quality Assurance, Sourcing, Supply Chain and Merchandising
teams who regularly engage with suppliers receive periodic training on our Social Responsibility Policy. Periodic strategy meetings between these departments are conducted to discuss supplier compliance, performance and sourcing strategy.
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