This document comprises the modern slavery statement of Horizon Care and Education Group (“Horizon”/“we”) in accordance with section 54, part 6 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (“the Act”).
Modern slavery, which is the term used throughout this statement, encompasses slavery, servitude, forced labour, and human trafficking, which are defined as follows:
- slavery – where a person exercises ownership over another;
- servitude – where a person is coerced into providing services and is unable to effect a change in his/her circumstances;
- forced labour – where a person is forced to work or provide a service, fearing reprisal is he/she does not comply; and
- human trafficking – where a person arranges or facilitates the travel of another person with the knowledge or intention to exploit that person.
Horizon has a zero-tolerance approach to modern slavery in its business activities and supply chains. We are committed to acting ethically, and with integrity and transparency in all business dealings and to continuously reviewing the systems and processes we have in place to safeguard against any form of modern slavery. To date, we have not found any indicators or instances of modern slavery in our business or supply chains.
Horizon provides specialised education and psychologically-informed residential care and support to children and young people in residential homes and schools across the country.
Responsibility for Horizon’s modern slavery prevention initiatives is summarised below.
- Policies: The Head of Governance is responsible for managing and leading the development of new, and the review of existing, policies across Horizon. The policies relevant to modern slavery prevention are summarised under the section entitled “Protecting our Colleagues”.
- Training: The Learning and Development Team is responsible for the training and development of colleagues. Training needs are reviewed on an annual basis and solutions are developed that are relevant to our business and its needs. In relation to the Act, the team will begin to monitor and drive completion rates of a new e-learning module entitled “Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking”. Completion of this module will be mandated for all new and existing staff members and compliance levels tracked.
- Risk assessment, governance and control: Horizon ensures that significant risks are appropriately managed and mitigated. Work is ongoing to formalise an organisation-wide approach in this area.
- Independent scrutiny: Horizon operates in a highly regulated sector, with regular independent scrutiny from Ofsted. Recruitment processes and colleague conduct and management form an integral part of internal and external inspection regimes, the learning from which is used to ensure that Horizon continues to develop and improve.
Protecting our Colleagues
Horizon is committed to treating its colleagues in a fair and consistent manner and in accordance with our values, which are:
- dependable; and
We operate the following policies that address modern slavery risks:
- Employee Code of Conduct: Horizon is committed to achieving and maintaining high standards of professional and ethical conduct amongst all colleagues. Our expectations are made clear through a number of policies including, but not limited to, the Anti-Bribery and Corruption Policy, the Bullying and Harassment Policy, the Equality and Diversity Policy and the Disciplinary Policy.
- Recruitment & Retention Policy: Horizon’s Recruitment & Retention Policy requires any agency involved in the identification of candidates for Horizon to comply with all relevant legislation. Horizon actively reviews their policies and procedures on an ongoing basis and only engages with reputable and compliant agencies. It also recognises that illegal workers are often the most vulnerable and exploited workers in the UK. It has therefore been designed to ensure that all Horizon colleagues are aware of their responsibilities in relation to tackling illegal working; namely to ensure that, prior to them commencing work with Horizon, individuals are checked to confirm that they are legally entitled to work in the UK.
- Whistleblowing Policy: Horizon’s Whistleblowing Policy provides a mechanism for colleagues to raise confidential concerns without fear of reprisal. To facilitate this policy, Horizon subscribes to an external whistleblowing line.
- Policies and Procedures: Horizon’s Policies and Procedures provide information to all colleagues on their statutory rights, including, but not limited to, sick pay, holiday pay and any other benefits that they might be entitled to by virtue of their employment.
Horizon only selects reputable suppliers, and contracts are used to drive compliance in keys areas. Where suppliers fail to act in accordance with Horizon’s values or ethos we invoke sanctions, which in the most serious cases could include termination of the business relationship. We are committed to continuously improving our approach to modern slavery risks and have identified supplier selection and onboarding as an area for review and potential development.
Over the next 12 months, all colleagues will be required to complete the e-learning module entitled “Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking.” The e-learning module is designed to raise colleague awareness of modern slavery and to help them recognise their role in identifying and reporting any concerns.
This statement has been approved by the Board, who will review and update it annually.
Chief Executive Officer
Horizon Care & Education Group Limited