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    SAFETY, HEALTH AND WELL-BEING

    Safety, health and well-being is the first and most fundamental aspect of our Right Works code of practice, which guides us in our pursuit of continuous improvement.

    We make sure:

    • Everyone has the prerequisite skills and knowledge to facilitate effective decision-making.
    • Encourage the right behaviours in each other.
    • Equip our people with comfortable PPE.
    • Provide access to information to enable the whole team to be fully effective.
    • Create a physically safe and conducive environment.

    We encourage behavioural safety through the use of our Right Works Tick-it system. The Tick-its, which can be completed online or using a paper form, are a simple means for anybody, beyond our own employees, to report incidences of good or poor practice, suggest improvements, or make other interventions to improve our safety performance and personal behaviour. Tick-its are responded to and submissions are analysed for trends and to ensure they are promptly closed out.

    We encourage all our people to take the time to look out for their own and each other’s emotional and mental well-being. We are forming a work environment where taking time to check in with each other on a regular basis is standard practice, creating an opportunity for any stress or anxiety to be shared.

    Our Occupational Health and Safety Management System is certified by BM Trada to ISO 45001:2018.

    ISO 45001:2018 logo
    ISO 45001:2018

    In recognition of our occupational health and safety performance over a period of 14 years, RoSPA has awarded Knights Brown the President’s Award.

    COMMUNITIES

    Construction communities

    The project teams on our construction sites engage with communities and help to build acceptance for our presence and understanding of our work through two-way communication, the provision of relevant and timely information and raising awareness of a project’s associated benefits.

    We aim to have a positive impact on the communities we’re working in, improving quality of life for people through a range of social value interventions scaled to the nature of the contract and its impact on the community. These are tailored to each project and community and seek to achieve social value outcomes linked to the central government policy issues of Covid-19 recovery, tackling economic inequality, fighting climate change, equal opportunity and physical and mental well-being.

    Examples include our engagement with educational settings across the age groups on activities that bring the curriculum to life, promoting the variety and many benefits of construction careers; creating opportunities for apprenticeships and short and long term work experience placements; supporting local businesses by frequenting local shops and services, and creating temporary job opportunities; and developing project supply chains that support entrepreneurship and economic growth.

    Our project teams are encouraged to use their employer supporting volunteering days to have an impact on their local area. Examples of these activities include helping in food banks and soup kitchens, maintaining and improving premises for voluntary sector organisations, and litter picking beach cleans.

    Office communities

    Under our employer supported volunteering scheme, every employee receives a day’s paid leave each year to volunteer in the community for a cause that is important to them. This day can be taken individually or with colleagues as a team of volunteers to work together on a community project.

    Over the course of a few days, one team created a wall of poppies to be placed on the town centre roundabout that we sponsor, to commemorate the centenary of Armistice Day and highlight the Royal British Legion’s annual Poppy Appeal.

    In 2019, more than 50 employer supported volunteering days were taken by our people to help local organisations and community events.

    Charity partnerships

    Bridges to Prosperity helps communities to build footbridges over impassable rivers enabling access to life-changing opportunities including healthcare, education and markets for isolated communities. This vital access provides a platform to relieve the poverty and disadvantage caused by rural isolation.

    Between 2016 and 2019, volunteers from Knights Brown and our co-sponsor Tony Gee, helped to build four of these footbridges.

    Our first two bridge builds in 2016 and 2017 took place in Rwanda. In 2018 and 2019 these projects were based in Uganda, extending the reach of the international charity’s essential work.

    Our employees’ experiences have enriched our business, promoted personal development and relieved isolation in rural communities.

    THE CLIMATE & NATURE EMERGENCY

    Our first comprehensive strategy to respond to the climate and nature emergency was released in April 2021. We call it Goal 13 in recognition of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, of which Goal 13 is climate action.

    We have set a clear objective for carbon reduction:

    To transition to net zero, accelerating progress to significantly reduce carbon emissions by 2030 in line with a science-based target pathway, compensating for residual emissions through potential high-impact climate and nature actions that deliver long-lasting, quality results alongside environmental and social benefits.

    Goal 13 also takes into account our broader environmental impacts recognising that the excessive consumption of precious resources contributes to effects such as pollution and the loss of wildlife and wild places, as well as to climate change itself. Our sustainable workplaces plan will help us make positive changes in important areas including reductions in water consumption, waste and single use plastic, building on existing good practice already taking place in our business.

    Our approach to the climate emergency has been informed by “Beyond Science-Based Targets: A Blueprint for Corporate Action on Climate and Nature” as put forward by the World Wide Fund for Nature in partnership with the Boston Consulting Group. In introducing the model they argue that for climate change strategies to be credible they need first to follow a robust mitigation hierarchy that focuses on real, Paris-aligned reductions, and then remaining emissions should be addressed through investments that maximise the company’s impact on climate change and help halt nature loss.

    While we currently report in line with the government’s policy on Streamlined Energy & Carbon Reporting (SECR), our ambition is to fully account and disclose all three scopes of emissions to an internationally recognised standard, accompanied by full identification of our climate-related risks, opportunities and strategies.

    Alongside this work, employee panels will identify quick wins we can make to immediately reduce our Scope 1 and 2 emissions as part of our ‘get our house in order’ first approach.

    For any peers yet to start on the net zero path and who may be feeling daunted by the size of the challenge, we are publishing Goal 13 and hope it will inspire action in your own organisation. For our part, we’d like to express our gratitude to Skanska UK, who in turn inspired us through their own transparency and industry leadership.

    Accreditations & Awards