What we do for people

We were created to give people a fairer deal — guided by our unique, customer-led Ethical Policy, we’ll always take action on the issues that matter most to our customers.

Our commitment to people

We are committed to acting in a way that helps individuals to live freely, equitably, and safely.

This includes how we treat our customers and colleagues, and our support for human rights and equality across the world. That’s why, alongside our trusted partners, we’re proud to drive positive social development and campaign for change.

We’ll always take action on the issues that matter most to our customers, such as homelessness and domestic abuse — standing up for those who need it the most.

What we will do

In line with our Ethical Policy, we will:

  • Review our products and services to ensure we are a responsible bank that treats customers fairly
  • Create an ethical workplace with a strong co-operative culture
  • Promote human rights, equality, and socially-just international development.

What we won't do

Determined through our ethical screening process, we will not provide banking services to any organisation, government, or business that:

  • Fails to respect human rights
  • Manufactures or transfers indiscriminate weapons
  • Has business relations with oppressive regimes
  • Advocates discrimination and hatred
  • Fails to put basic labour rights in place
  • Blocks access to basic human necessities, such as safe drinking water.

We're committed

to making sure the organisations we serve do not conflict with our ethical commitments.

We will campaign

to drive meaningful change with our partners, particularly on issues such as human rights and equality.

What we're currently doing

Supporting Centrepoint’s mission to end youth homelessness

At The Co-operative Bank, we believe that no young person in our society should be homeless or at risk of homelessness. That's why we've been working with Centrepoint, the UK's leading youth homelessness charity, since 2017.

With the help of our customers and colleagues, we've raised over £2 million (correct as of February 2022) to help fund the Centerpoint Helpline, which offers support to young people across the UK.

Learn more about our work with Centrepoint

Supporting human rights with Amnesty International UK

Supporting human rights is something that has always mattered to our customers and colleagues. Because of this, it’s a commitment we’ve included in our Ethical Policy since its launch in 1992.

This is also the same year that we began working with Amnesty International UK — the world’s largest grassroots human rights organisation. Over the years, we’ve stood alongside them as they’ve fought for people facing injustice and inequality; supporting their Rise Up programme to develop the next generation of human rights activists, as well as their annual Write for Rights campaign.

Find out more about our partnership with Amnesty International UK

Raising awareness of economic abuse, in partnership with Refuge

In 2020 we launched our ‘Know Economic Abuse’ campaign with domestic violence charity, Refuge, to raise awareness and gain more of an understanding of the true scale of economic abuse in the UK.

We also formed a five-point plan of action to increase the support available to those experiencing this type of abuse, and help prevent it from happening — something which we continue to campaign for.

Learn more about our ‘Know Economic Abuse’ campaign

Get help if you or someone you know is experiencing economic abuse

Building a fairer gender balance with the Women in Finance Charter

In 2016, we were one of the first companies in the UK to sign up to the Women in Finance Charter. Led by HM Treasury, the initiative aims to improve career progression for women, and ensure that all employees — regardless of gender — have the opportunity to rise to the top when working in the finance sector.

As an organisation with strong roots in supporting gender equality, The Co-operative Bank strives to continue building a fairer gender balance. In 2020, we successfully reached our target to increase female representation in our senior leadership to 40%, and are committed to pushing this to at least 45%by the end of 2023.

Learn more about Women in Finance

Community

In line with our co-operative values, we demand a fairer society. This is why we will continue to support the co-operative movement, and help small businesses to thrive.

Planet

We’ve remained committed to the planet by tackling the climate crisis over the past 30 years — and we’re not stopping any time soon.

Our values and ethics

For 150 years, we’ve been committed to our co-operative values and ethics, which are still fundamental to who we are today.

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