Responsible Procurement

For Cornwall Council, responsible procurement means socially, environmentally and economically responsible procurement to deliver improved quality of life and better value for money for our people, our businesses and our county. Essentially, responsible procurement is good procurement.

The Council has six responsible procurement workstreams which can be found in detail in our Responsible Procurement Policy. Information and guidance on these individual workstreams can be found below:

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  • Environmental sustainability and carbon management
  • Equality and diversity
  • Safeguarding
  • Ethical sourcing
  • Health and safety
  • Supply Chain Diversification
  • Social Value: Employment and Skills
  • Social Value: Additional Outcomes for Vulnerable Groups
  • Social Value: Supporting, protecting and improving community assets

Cornwall Council is confident that it has achieved level 4 of the Sustainable Procurement Task Force Flexible Framework.

Along with our partners, we are committed to ensuring that goods and services are delivered in a way that helps to protect the quality of the environment and minimises any adverse impact on the climate from the release of greenhouse gases.

Cornwall Council is committed to purchasing timber from sustainable sources. For many years a majority of the Council’s timber purchasing has been Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) accredited, however this has not been monitored effectively. In 2013 the Council was awarded 'silver' under the WWF Sustainable Timber Campaign.

The Carbon Trust have secured funding to provide free support for small businesses to progress energy efficiency opportunities. The support includes training workshops, capital contributions to energy saving
equipment, and free opportunity assessments.

As part of the Council's approach to equal opportunities and statutory responsibilities, we are keen to ensure that the procuring of goods, works and services is carried out in a manner which:

  • Promotes equal opportunity
  • Promotes good relations
  • Eliminates discrimination (either direct or indirect)

The Corporate Procurement Team has assisted Cornwall Council in reaching the 'achieving' level of the Equality Framework for Local Government through effective implementation of equality and diversity considerations in procurement. In our peer assessment in 2013 the Procurement Service was judged as ‘at if not nearing Excellent’.

If you are tendering to sell goods, works or services then you should first read the 'Equality Information Sheet' which will give you a basic understanding of equality and diversity in procurement.

General information on equality and diversity in the Council is available.

The Council has a Safeguarding Advocates Network amongst its suppliers. Advocates receive regular updates from the Council on safeguarding policy changes and are invited to safeguarding advocates events. Further information can be found on the Supplier Safeguarding Advocates webpage.

Everybody has the right to be safe no matter who they are or what their circumstances.  Safeguarding is about protecting children, young people and vulnerable adults from abuse or neglect.

We are all responsible for the safety of children, young people and vulnerable adults. We must ensure that we are doing all we can to protect the most vulnerable members in our society.

The Council expects that any organisation wishing to provide services where staff are employed to work directly or indirectly with children, young people or vulnerable adults are able to demonstrate standards of safeguarding commensurate with those expected of statutory organisations.

The Safeguarding Schedule is usually used for procurement processes where Safeguarding is a significant risk.

Further information on safeguarding in the Council is available. 

Cornwall Council are committed to finding applications of ethical sourcing considerations. We will use a risk based approach, based on country, public exposure (reputational risk) and proportionality to identify relevant products and specific contracts suitable for ethical sourcing considerations.

The Council are also working closely with partners across the County and South West to implement an approach to minimising risks associated with Modern Slavery. The Council’s statement on slavery was published in September 2016. 

Potential Council suppliers are encouraged to read this simple guide to Modern Slavery.

Useful links:

Cornwall Council is committed to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of its staff, visitors, contractors, residents and any other users of its buildings, facilities or services.  Where these services or facilities are provided by suppliers (including contractors, sub contractors and any other partner organisations), those providers will be subject to an appropriate and proportionate assessment of their health and safety (H&S) policy and arrangements. There will be occasions when it is deemed that, due to the nature of the services to be provided, a specific H&S assessment will not be required.

Health and safety requirements vary from contract to contract depending on the subject matter and associated risk. On each project the Council’s Heath and Safety team help to assess the risk.