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Code of Conduct

GRI Content Index

First developed in 2005 and last updated in 2016, Gildan’s Code of Conduct governs the Company’s daily operations by setting forth clear guidelines for the maintenance of an ethical workplace. Gildan’s management has aligned these guiding principles with internationally recognized standards, such as the International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions, which are essential in today’s workplace.

Gildan’s Code of Conduct also encompasses principles set forth by the Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP). The FLA’s stated purpose is to protect workers' rights and improve working conditions worldwide, while WRAP’s principles establish a set of best practices commonly agreed upon in the area of social responsibility.

Our Code of Conduct unequivocally asserts our position on critical labour issues including child labour, forced labour, compensation, hours of work/overtime, health and safety as well as best practices, which Gildan believes are integral to both our organization and our employees.

Gildan recently updated its Code of Conduct to better align its principles with those of the FLA. The most significant change was to the compensation provision, which now supports the notion that employees are compensated sufficiently to meet their basics needs and have some discretionary income. For more details on Gildan’s approach to compensation and living wage, please refer to the Wages and Benefits section.

Every employee is required to comply with Gildan’s Code of Conduct. As part of the roll out of our revised Code of Conduct, formal training will be provided to all employees.

Click here to download Gildan’s Code of Conduct in poster format. Read more about Code of Conduct compliance.

  • Internal Communication and Training Programs

    All new employees are familiarized with Gildan’s Code of Conduct through a formal onboarding process administered by the Human Resources and Corporate Social Responsibility departments. We document this process by requiring new hires to certify in writing that they have read and understood the Code of Conduct. In addition, new employees are informed on topics relating to corporate citizenship, as well as their rights and obligations in this regard. Overall, these measures provide new employees with knowledge of Gildan’s Code of Conduct and the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility within our Company.

    Refresher training on Gildan’s Code of Conduct or other topics relating to corporate citizenship is provided periodically to prevent or address potential issues in the workplace. In 2015 refresher training on the Code of Conduct was provided to all employees in our sewing, textile and screen printing facilities in Honduras, Nicaragua and the Dominican Republic and in 2016 this program was extended to our integrated facility in Bangladesh.

    In 2014, the Code of Conduct was introduced to the employees of the recently formed, Gildan Apparel (Canada) LP, which was followed by a more in depth training in 2016. Moreover, employees of the Peds facility in the United States benefited from training on the Code of Conduct soon after the acquisition of this company in 2016.

    In addition, during 2016, all managers and middle managers of the recently acquired Gildan owned facilities in Mexico were trained on the Code of Conduct. In addition, as part of the integration process, facilities started Code of Conduct training for the remaining employees, which they intend to complete by mid-2017.

    The Code of Conduct has been translated from its original English and made available in the several languages spoken locally in our various operating regions.  As such, the Code of Conduct is now displayed in English, French, Spanish, Haitian Creole, Polish, Bengali, Chinese, Vietnamese, Khmer, Urdu and Korean in line with the languages predominantly spoken by employees in of our owned and third party contractor facilities.

  • Sustainable Social and Environmental Compliance Guidebook

    Gildan’s Sustainable Social and Environmental Compliance Guidebook is a comprehensive reference tool that summarizes principles of the International Labor Organization’s conventions, including standards and policies that must be implemented in order to protect and promote workers’ rights. Specifically, this manual includes the following:

    1. A detailed explanation of how to implement an integrated approach to meeting Gildan’s compliance benchmarks, including a chapter which outlines the importance and practicality of integrating social and environmental compliance into a facility’s existing management systems. 
    2. The benefits of implementing a systems-based approach to social and environmental compliance instead of taking an issue-focused and fragmented approach.  It explains the elements of a social compliance systems-based approach. It also provides a simple flow chart for setting up a Social Compliance Management System.
    3. Policies and operating procedures for each employment function. The guidebook has individual chapters that discuss:
    • Employment Relationship 
    • Forced Labour  
    • Labour Relations 
      • Freedom of Association
    • Child Labour 
    • Workplace Conduct 
      • Harassment and Abuse  
      • Discipline and Termination 
    • Grievance Mechanisms 
    • Hours of Work 
    • Compensation and Benefits 
    • Health and Safety 
    • Environmental protection  
    • Use of dormitories 

    Gildan’s Corporate Social Responsibility team continually works with its facility and contractor management teams in an effort to help them improve their labour compliance performance.