About us

Mitch Dowd

While Rick Astley ruled the charts in 1987, budding artist Mitch Dowd rocked the fashion world with his ground-breaking hand-painted boxer short.

Looking to raise money for an exhibition, Mitch hit Melbourne’s shopping mecca Chapel Street looking for a buyer. He found plenty and within a week he’d sold 150 pairs. Mitch set up his exhibition, and a business as well.

With David Jones and Myer on board, the boxer short revolution was underway. On top of designing and manufacturing high quality boxers and trunks, Mitch expanded his repertoire to include sleepwear and socks for men, women and kids.

In 1993, Mitch’s younger brother Jason left his job in Corporate Recovery at Arthur Andersen to join the business. With Jason in charge of the business side and Mitch concentrating on new products and designs, Mitch Dowd has grown to become part of the fabric of Australian fashion.

It remains one of the very few independent and privately owned clothing businesses in Australia.

Mitch Dowd the artist is still looking towards his next exhibition. Mitch’s art goes under the name of Mitch McAuley (his mother’s maiden name). And he’s still on the lookout for buyers.  www.mitchellmcauley.com

Over 30 years young, Mitch Dowd remains a market leader with loyal wearers around Australia and New Zealand. With new designs and firsts like the organic cotton and bamboo Green range, the business continues to thrive. With a great team in place the fresh, fun, innovative ideas are set to keep coming.

Since starting out in the late eighties with nothing more than a brush, fabric paint and an assortment of plain white boxer shorts, Mitch Dowd has come a long way.

While Rick Astley ruled the charts in 1987, budding artist Mitch Dowd was taking the fashion world by storm with his ground-breaking hand-painted boxer shorts.

Looking to raise money for an exhibition, Mitch hit Melbourne’s shopping mecca Chapel Street looking for a buyer, of which he found plenty. Within a week, Mitch had sold 150 pairs.

After a successful exhibition, Mitch went ahead and started a business. With David Jones and Myer on board, the boxer short revolution was underway. In addition to designing and manufacturing high quality boxers and trunks, Mitch expanded his repertoire to include sleepwear and socks for men, women and kids.

In 1993, Mitch’s younger brother Jason left his job in corporate recovery to join Mitch in the business. With Jason in charge of the business side of things, Mitch could now concentrate on producing new products and designs.

In the years following, Mitch Dowd grew to become part of the fabric of Australian fashion. It remains one of the very few independent and privately owned clothing businesses in Australia.

Mitch’s career as an artist continues

As an artist, Mitch Dowd is always looking towards his next exhibition. His art goes under the name of Mitch McAuley (his mother’s maiden name) and he’s consistently on the lookout for buyers. You can view his artwork at www.mitchellmcauley.com.

Over 30 years young, Mitch Dowd remains a market leader, with loyal wearers around Australia and New Zealand. New designs and firsts like the organic cotton and bamboo Green range ensure that the business continues to thrive. With a great team in place, the fresh, fun and innovative ideas are set to keep coming.

Overview

Mitch Dowd Design is committed to respecting human rights, protecting the planet, and delivering a positive environmental legacy for future generations as we operate and grow our business. Our Terms of Trade contains our Ethical Sourcing Policy that documents our minimum requirements and expectations that all suppliers must meet in order to do business with us. All suppliers must sign our Terms of Trade as part of the onboarding process. The Ethical Sourcing Policy has been designed to meet and exceed the compliance requirements of our customers and licensors by ensuring that our suppliers understand and respect internationally recognised labour standards and human rights obligations as well as business ethics, quality and principles of environmental responsibility and sustainability. We expect our Suppliers to uphold our standards. We also seek to collaborate with Suppliers around the world to prevent, mitigate, and remedy adverse human rights impacts as well as reduce the environmental impacts of our operations, products, services, and supply chains. We expect Suppliers to comply with applicable laws and regulations including, but not limited to, those pertaining to the manufacture, processing, pricing, sale, import, export, and distribution of products, components, or raw materials. In certain areas, the Code’s standards for Suppliers may surpass local law.

Human Rights

Suppliers should be familiar with the United Nations’ Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and should exercise due diligence to identify, prevent, mitigate, and account for how Suppliers address actual or potential adverse human rights impacts through its own activities, or those directly linked to its operations, products, or services through its business relationships.

Child Labour

Suppliers must agree not to use child labour in the manufacturing or packaging of our merchandise. The Term “child” refers to a person younger than the age of completing compulsory education (or less than local/regional law specifications), but in no case shall any child younger than fourteen (14) years of age be employed in the manufacturing of our merchandise. Mitch Dowd supports the development of legitimate apprenticeship programs for the education and benefit of young people 14 and over, provided the child is not being exploited or given jobs that are dangerous to their health or safety.

Modern Slavery, Forced/Bonded Labor, Coercion and Harassment

Suppliers must agree only to employ persons whose presence is voluntary. The Employer agrees not to use prison, bonded or indentured labour, servitude, forced marriage, forced labour or engage in human trafficking. Workers will not be required to lodge deposits or their identity papers with the Suppliers. Employees are free to leave after the shift ends, or to leave their employment after giving their employer reasonable notice Employers will not use corporal punishment or other forms of mental or physical coercion as a form of discipline of employees. Note that a number of Mitch Dowd’s customers are signatory to, and therefore bound by, the Australian Modern Slavery Act 2018 and Mitch Dowd also respects and complies to the principles outlined in the Act.

Non-Discrimination

All conditions of employment must be based on an individual’s ability to do the job, not on the basis of personal characteristics, such as gender, ethnic origin, religion, or personal beliefs. Suppliers must ensure that they provide an environment where their employees can work without distress or interference caused by harassment, discrimination or any other inappropriate workplace behavior.

Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

Suppliers acknowledge that workers have the right to join or form trade unions of their own choosing and to bargain collectively. Suppliers are required to adopt an open attitude toward the activities of trade unions and their organization activities. Where the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining are restricted under the local laws, Suppliers will not hinder the development of alternative means of independent and free association and bargaining.

Relevant Laws (including Wages and Benefits)

The Employer agrees to comply with all applicable wage and hour Laws, including minimum wage, overtime, and maximum hours. The Employer agrees to comply with laws pertaining to manufacture, pricing, sale and distribution of merchandise. The Employer agrees to utilise fair employment practices as defined by applicable Law. All references to “applicable laws” include local and national codes, rules and regulations as well as applicable treaties and voluntary industry standards.

Sub-contracting

Suppliers must ensure that all its sub-contractors and suppliers providing materials or labor in the manufacture of goods ordered by us comply with this Social Compliance Agreement. Suppliers must have adequate processes in place for controlling any subcontracted production, such as a list of outsourced processes, approved supplier list and signed agreements with supplier for services. All sub-contractors must be disclosed upon request.

Publication to employees

Employers will take appropriate steps to ensure that the provisions of this Social Compliance Agreement are communicated to employees, including the prominent posting of a copy of this Social Compliance Agreement, in the local language and in a place readily accessible to employees at all times.

Working Hours

Working hours shall comply with applicable local laws. Workers shall not work more hours in one week than allowable under local laws. Overtime shall be voluntary and shall be compensated as prescribed by local laws.

Accommodation 

Where Employers provide worker accommodation, it shall be clean, safe and meet the basic needs of the workers. Access to drinking water, sanitary facilities adequate lighting and ventilation are minimum requirements for employees.

Health and Safety (including equipment)

Suppliers will provide workers with a safe and clean working environment, taking into account the prevailing knowledge of the industry and of any specific hazards and will provide plant and systems of work that are safe and without risks to health. Suppliers must have in place Occupational Health and Safety policies such as fire safety emergency evacuation plans and conduct safety drills and risk assessment for safe, healthy and hygienic working conditions. This will include an adequate number of unlocked, freely accessible and clearly marked exits for emergency evacuations, and properly maintained firefighting equipment. Access to portable drinking water, sanitary facilities adequate lighting and ventilation are minimum requirements for employees. Workers must be appropriately supervised and trained to perform their jobs safely.

Protection of the Environment

Mitch Dowd requires suppliers, as a minimum, to meet all relevant local and national environmental protection laws, and to strive to comply with international environment protection and conservation standards. We recognize that the application of our minimum standards may vary between suppliers, and some may need to work towards achieving compliance. We intend to work with non-conforming suppliers to achieve compliance on environmental permits and reporting, pollution prevention and resource reduction, hazardous substances, solid waste management, air emissions, water management, energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions.

Ethics and Responsible Business

Suppliers must adhere to all applicable anti-corruption laws and anti-bribery laws, rules, and regulations, and any other anti-corruption or anti-bribery obligations pertaining to the Supplier’s performance under its agreements with Mitch Dowd Design.

Prohibited Sourcing Locations

Mitch Dowd prohibits sourcing labour, raw materials or finished goods from Myanmar due to continuing allegations of human rights violations against ethnic minorities, including the Rohingya. Mitch Dowd prohibits sourcing labour, raw materials or finished goods from Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) in China due to ongoing allegations of forced child and adult labour, as well as forced sterilisations and other human rights abuses of ethnic Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups. No Supplier is allowed to source cotton from Uzbekistan due to forced and child labour. Mitch Dowd will not consider sourcing from these locations until these allegations of human rights abuses have been independently verified as eliminated.

Monitoring, Compliance and Site Access

Mitch Dowd Design reserves the right to audit the Supplier to ensure compliance with these Terms of Trade/Ethical Sourcing Policy. It is agreed with Suppliers that Mitch Dowd will be free to monitor compliance with this Social Compliance Agreement, and we, or our representatives, may visit Supplier’s factories or facilities with or without prior notice to ensure compliance with this policy. Any violations of this Ethical Sourcing Policy will be reported to the Suppliers management for follow up and, if appropriate, corrective action will be required. Corrective action may include ceasing to do business with the Supplier concerned, in accordance with our Standard Terms and Conditions of Supply.