Respect for Human Rights



Respect for Employees' Human Rights (Brother Group Principles of Social Responsibility)

In 2012, the Brother Group Principles of Social Responsibility was formulated to clearly define our corporate responsibility and actions toward achieving a sustainable society. Sections on non-discrimination and non-harassment, fair and lawful labor practices, freedom of association, child and forced labor, clearly defined disciplinary polices, and whistleblowing system were established in this set of principles which expresses the fundamental principles of the responsibilities and actions of companies in the Brother Group. It clearly states that we will provide fair working conditions, handle everyone with faith and respect, observe fundamental human rights, and we expect our employees to act in the same way.

Brother Group Principles of Social Responsibility

Establishment of Whistleblowing and Consultation Hotline (Employee Hotline for Compliance Issues)

At the Brother Group, Brother Industries, Ltd. (BIL) and group companies within and outside Japan have compliance consultation and whistleblowing hotlines to prevent violations, act quickly against them, and take preventive steps against reoccurrences.
BIL has the internal Employee Hotline for Compliance Issues for employees to consult and report when they discover or suspect compliance violations, have issues which are not resolved even after reporting to and consulting with their workplace supervisors, or when they have issues which cannot be reported to or consulted with workplace supervisors due to inevitable circumstances. BIL has also established the internal Employee Hotline for Harassment Issues that is dedicated to harassment behavior—such as sexual and power harassment—in an effort to create workplace environments where employees can work while respecting each other. In addition, an external hotline for compliance issues has also been established with affiliated lawyers outside the company to allow employees to directly report violations.

Respect for Human Rights by Suppliers ("Procurement Policy" and "CSR Procurement Standards")

The Brother Group makes its "Procurement Policy" and "CSR Procurement Standards" publicly available to share its CSR procurement concept with parts and materials suppliers. The policy and standards cover a wide range of fields, including human rights and labor, the rights to organize and bargain collectively, safety and health, global environmental protection, fair trade and ethics, product quality and safety, raw materials, information security, and social contribution. The Brother Group complies with local laws and regulations and supports workers' collective bargaining rights by conducting collective negotiations and respecting communication between management and employees on working conditions and management practices.

In the Procurement Policy, the Brother Group clearly states that we act fairly with all suppliers, consider issues concerning conflict minerals* as very important matters, and take proactive approaches toward responsible procurement of minerals. In the CSR Procurement Standards, together with expressing our stance of respecting human rights in each stated item, we also request suppliers to observe human rights in their procurement activities.

For details, please see the site for "Social(S)- Responsible Supply Chain".

  • Minerals that have been extracted by improper means in a conflict area. It has been indicated that trading such minerals provides a source of funds for armed groups and contributes to human right violations, labor problems, environmental degradation, and other issues.

Conflict Minerals Response Policy and Efforts

A part of minerals (tantalum, tin, gold and tungsten) produced in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and neighboring countries in Africa are some sources of funds for local armed groups, and there are concerns that transactions for such minerals may promote conflicts and involve matters such as human rights violations, labor issues and environmental degradation problems.
These minerals are called "conflict minerals," and the Brother Group recognizes the issue regarding them as an important issue from a corporate perspective to fulfill its corporate social responsibility (CSR).
To implement responsible procurement, the Brother Group carries out surveys on the use of such minerals and will steadily undertake efforts toward avoiding the use of conflict minerals while cooperating with suppliers.

The Brother Group has examined systems and methods to deal with the issue of conflict minerals since 2014 and has been carrying out conflict minerals surveys targeting suppliers since 2016. Currently, we have established a working group in which related business units including those in charge of purchasing, law, and CSR affairs participate, and deal with this issue in a comprehensive manner.
In addition, to confirm the state of response to the issue of conflict minerals across the Brother Group's entire supply chain, we formulated our "Work Standard for Conflict Mineral Surveys" based on the "Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas" by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and are promoting the survey program.

For details, please see the site for "Social(S)- Responsible Supply Chain- Efforts in the Brother Group to Deal with the Issue of Conflict Minerals".

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