Health, safety and HIV/Aids

In view of the hazardous nature of many of our operations, dedicated senior managers are assigned full responsibility for health and safety issues and compliance with South Africa’s Occupational Health and Safety Act, or equivalent standards in other jurisdictions.

It is with regret that we report the death of 11 employees in work-related incidents, up from six in 2008. In each case due process has been followed. Internal enquiries have been held. We cooperate fully with the relevant authorities. Our target is zero fatalities. Our businesses increasingly focus on the lost time injury frequency rate in the ongoing quest to reduce job-related incidences. The overall rate is down from 7,4 to 5,2, but is still too high.

HIV/Aids is a major challenge at many African operations. High-risk companies run awareness and prevention campaigns. We offer counselling and treatment, but in the worst-affected communities, employees tend to be resistant to testing, making further assistance difficult.

GRI index and independent assurance

Bidvest followed the GRI’s G3 sustainability reporting guidelines and in a self assessment of compliance achieved a B+ level of application.

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Deloitte & Touche were engaged to conduct an independent assurance on selected sustainable development performance data. On the basis of their reasonable assurance procedures, Deloitte & Touche concluded that the selected sustainable development data was compiled in accordance with corporate policies and procedures and was free from material misstatements.

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