Being Christian disciples implies that the values of our faith inform all aspects of our lives, including our investment choices. Those choices must take into account an awareness that God calls us to live in harmony with creation, to work for justice, to seek benefit for the poor and the oppressed, and to be a voice for the voiceless.

The Diocese therefore aims to undertake Responsible Investment, by applying the following principles:

a) Ethical Screening: we aim to exclude from our portfolio those companies that are involved in activities that contradict our mission, beliefs, and values. This includes companies that produce armaments, generate significant revenues from fossil fuels, adult entertainment, gambling, tobacco, or high interest rate lending, and those whose activities threaten the sanctity of life.

For full details please refer to the Diocesan Ethical Investment Policy here.

b) Pursuit of the Common Good: through stewardship and engagement (directly or via our investment manager) we seek to improve companies’ management of specific issues, and to promote the principles of Catholic Social Teaching. We expect our investment manager to vote on all company resolutions and to engage with all companies in our portfolio at least once a year. We expect our investment manager to collaborate with other investors to push companies to improve their actions to support the shared life of a society in which everyone can flourish. This will include engagement in initiatives relating to, amongst other issues, climate change, modern slavery, mental health, and equality.

c) Environmental, Social, and Governance Analysis: companies with inadequate systems for managing environmental or social obstacles, or with poor standards of corporate governance, contain hidden risks and are less sustainable as long-term investments than other companies. We expect our investment manager to assess and consider the ESG standards of all companies before investing in them, and hence to identify those to be avoided.

As a result of this process our investments have better than benchmark corporate governance ratings, and a carbon footprint that is approximately one-third that of the MSCI World Index.

We expect our investment manager to be a signatory to the FRC UK Stewardship Code and to the United Nations supported Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI). Each year, we will hold a responsible investment session with our manager to cover their approach to ESG integration, their engagement activities, how they have voted on our portfolio holdings and compliance with the Diocesan Ethical Investment Policy.

This document will be periodically reviewed and updated to ensure that it remains relevant and responsive to the challenges of the day.