UNWTO Ethics Award
The UNWTO Ethics Award was established in 2016 and is open to all companies and associations that are official signatories of the Private Sector Commitment to the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism. In order to be eligible for the Ethics Award, signatories of the Private Sector Commitment to the Code must have reported on its implementation.
The Jury of the UNWTO Ethics Award is composed of the Chair and members of the World Committee on Tourism Ethics (WCTE), an independent and impartial body responsible for overseeing the implementation of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism. In selecting the awardee, WCTE Members follow the criteria set forth in the Ethics Award Guidelines.
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UNWTO Ethics Award Laureates
2019 Ethics Award laureate: Serviço Social do Comércio - Sesc
Strongly committed to the principles of environmental and social responsibility, SESC, a Brazilian non-profit private institution, was created in 1948 and is one of the country’s most active organizations, operating in all 27 of Brazil’s states, financing from recreational activities to arts programs, educational courses and health clinics.
The objective is to cater for many different target groups (elderly, young people, kids) with a range of activities (sports, recreational, cultural, education).
As part of Sesc's Social Tourism Program, outbound days and overnight trips are organized offering subsidised accommodation facilities. These trips, serving approximately 116.000 thousand people per year, include activities that foster critical thinking about tourism. Its principIes are based on democratic access to tourism, culture and education, always taking into consideration sustainability factors and the promotion of local businesses.
There is a wide range of activities linked to the Social Tourism Program that can exemplify the implementation of the principles of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism. Just to give a few samples:
- Annual editions of the "Ethics in Tourism lectures" by international researchers, which address topics such as labour rights in tourism, gender equality, responsible tourism development, overtourism issues, awareness to fight child exploitation in tourism amongst other topics.
- The creation of a Nature Reserve of approximately 60,000m2 located near Sesc Bertioga's accommodation facilities. This reserve has a management plan which used a participatory methodology and involved the local community from its foundation.
For more information please visit the SESC website
2018 Ethics Award laureate: Europa Mundo Vacaciones
Europa Mundo Vacaciones, a Spanish Tour Operator, has created in 2011 a Foundation which has achieved remarkable results in the implementation of the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism in its worldwide activities, particularly in its contribution in the area of community wellbeing and sustainable development of tourism.
In six years of activity, the Foundation has invested a total of EUR 1.5 million to support 104 projects in 27 countries in the areas of education, health, creation of companies and infrastructures, directly benefitting 186.849 individuals.
Recent examples of community development projects include those creating and consolidating self-sustaining health systems in the most populated and unprotected areas in countries, such as in remote provinces of Bolivia, Colombia, Morocco and Nepal, and consisted in the provision of basic health education and training to the local communities by qualified medical volunteers. Other outstanding projects supported by the Foundation were focused on the promotion of a sustainable development of tourism in disadvantaged areas, as the one carried out in Nicaragua, where the creation of jobs for the local communities was facilitated by a local foundation through the development of a sustainable tourist route in rural areas. A similar project in Lebanon was specifically addressed to the socio-economic inclusion of local and refugee women in isolated provinces.
The Foundation also strongly collaborates with the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) department of its company Europa Mundo Vacaciones in organizing social and environmental awareness campaigns and volunteering programs involving its employees, providers and clients.
2017 Ethics Award laureate: ILUNION Hotels
The pioneering policies of ILUNION Hotels in the area of universal accessibility carry an enormous potential to change attitudes, break down social barriers and make the accommodation sector more inclusive.
ILUNION Hotels has developed a specific business model of universal accessibility that comprises not only customers with disabilities and specific access requirements, but also its employees and suppliers. All the hotels of the group have obtained the Universal Accessibility Certificate from Bureau Veritas (UNE 170001-2), which guarantees that the hotels provide environments, rooms, and technical aids which ensure universal accessibility for all. ILUNION’s workforce of 568 people includes 18,31% of employees with some form of disability, but if we consider both direct and indirect employees, the percentage reaches 40%. Furthermore, specific training plans in accessibility awareness guarantee a standard of excellence in the interaction between employees and customers. As the constant improvement in the area of accessibility is key part of the company’s mission, specific plans are established every year to upgrade and improve the accessibility of the group’s infrastructure and services.
For these reasons, ILUNION Hotels’ innovative approach to accessibility represents a virtuous, innovative and replicable best practice of corporate social responsibility.
For more information, please visit the website.