This statement outlines our actions and activities in 2019 regarding efforts to combat slavery and human trafficking within our business and supply chain and is provided to comply with the Modern Slavery Act.
Discovery, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) is a global leader in real life entertainment, serving a passionate audience of superfans around the world with content that inspires, informs and entertains. Discovery delivers over 8,000 hours of original programming each year and has category leadership across deeply loved content genres around the world. Available in 220 countries and territories and nearly 50 languages, Discovery is a platform innovator, reaching viewers on all screens, including TV Everywhere products such as the GO portfolio of apps; direct-to-consumer streaming services such as Eurosport Player, Food Network Kitchen and MotorTrend OnDemand; digital-first and social content from Group Nine Media; a landmark natural history and factual content partnership with the BBC; and a strategic alliance with PGA TOUR to create the international home of golf. Discovery’s portfolio of premium brands includes Discovery Channel, HGTV, Food Network, TLC, Investigation Discovery, Travel Channel, MotorTrend, Animal Planet, Science Channel, and the forthcoming multi-platform JV with Chip and Joanna Gaines, Magnolia, as well as OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network in the U.S., Discovery Kids in Latin America, and Eurosport, the leading provider of locally relevant, premium sports and Home of the Olympic Games across Europe. For more information, please visit corporate.discovery.com and follow @DiscoveryIncTV across social platforms.
As of December 31, 2019, Discovery employed over 9,000 people globally, of whom more than 1,000 were based in the UK. In addition, as of December 31, 2019, the company worked with nearly 14,000 suppliers worldwide.
As reported in our previous statements, Discovery has a Code of Ethics which defines our commitment to operate with integrity and high ethical standards in all our business activities. All Discovery employees, executives, officers and directors must act according to the principles set forth in the Code which set out the ethical conduct required of all those who work for the company. In addition, Discovery expects anyone working on behalf of the Company, including consultants, agents, suppliers, contractors, and business partners, to adhere to the principles set forth in the Discovery Code of Ethics. Also, it applies to all our divisions and subsidiaries around the globe and to those joint ventures that are subject to the Code.
We strive to hold our employees and business partners including suppliers to act with ethical and legal standards of business integrity. Any violation of our Code by a Discovery employee can result in disciplinary action, including termination of employment. Moreover, a violation by a supplier may result in contract termination.
The Code offers resources including how to raise concerns or potential violations including instances that may give rise to an enhanced risk of slavery or human trafficking via the Discovery EthicsPoint hotline, which is available both internally and externally. Also, there are global policies underpinning and elaborating on the principles set forth in the Code.
Additionally, our Code includes a section on human rights. We recognise and respect all labour and employment laws, including those respecting freedom of association, privacy, equal employment opportunity and child labour, wherever we operate. We believe that working positively and directly with employees best serves their interests.
Supply Chain and Corporate Operations
As a global media company, Discovery’s core business is in the production and distribution of media content. Our content supply chains are diverse and include commissioned content created by production companies and finished content licensed from distribution and production companies. We also have a smaller supply chain that supports our licensing business and creates branded products for company events. We recognise that workers on production crews or workers in manufacturing plants may be at risk for modern slavery.
Discovery employs people both directly and through business partners. Services such as construction, renovation, security and cleaning are often subcontracted and carry greater risk of modern slavery. Though in those situations we are not directly responsible for the employment relationship or how these entities manage their employees, we do expect our business partners to act with integrity and meet our standards of ethical business practice.
We are not aware of, nor do we have any information to suggest that, any forced or involuntary labour are present in our supply chains. We apply strict and consistent standards when dealing with suppliers around the world.
Discovery implements measures to assess and mitigate modern slavery risk in the supply chain. In 2019, our focus was on building awareness by educating within the company and sharing our expectations with business partners.
We expanded the use of our supplier assessment questionnaires regarding fair and safe labour practices more specifically by:
Extending questionnaires to existing and potential partners in hospitality, manufacturing and licensing to gain insight to our partners’ practices relating to wages, health, safety and the environment, and those combating improper discrimination and child and forced labour; and
Inquiring whether our partners have established policies akin to a code of ethics or similar expectations of business conduct and integrity; and existence of reporting channels in place for employees and third parties to raise concerns.
We raised awareness and educated employees by:
Launching our global Code of Ethics training for employees, including enhanced education on selecting business partners in high-risk areas; and
Leading targeted awareness sessions among key departments, such as Facilities, Travel and global leadership teams conducting business in high risk countries.
We will continue to build upon the risk mitigation processes set out above and address any findings.
Discovery has formal governance processes and committees in place for overseeing our commitment to ethical conduct.
Discovery is a mission-driven company that engages in various corporate social responsibility activities each year, including a day of volunteering called Impact Day. Additionally, the company conducts internal campaigns and other awareness activities to emphasize the importance of ethical business practices to all its employees.
This statement is made pursuant to section 54(1) of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 and constitutes the Discovery group’s slavery and human trafficking statement for the financial year ending 31 December 2019. The Discovery group entities covered by this statement are: DNI Global LLP; Discovery Communications Europe Limited; Discovery Corporate Services Limited; and Dplay Entertainment Limited.