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Respect for Human Rights


Guided by The Basic Commitment of the Toshiba Group, we respect the rights of all stakeholders, such as our employees, customers, and shareholders. We support the universal principles regarding human rights and labor practices, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and respect human rights through sound business activities.

Medium- to Long-term Vision

  • Raise awareness on respect for human rights.
  • Identify priority areas to carry out human rights impact assessments and conduct 100% human rights due diligence at business sites with high human rights risks.
  • Conduct ongoing education and enrichment on respect for human rights.

FY2019 Achievements

  • Created and updated our statement on the Modern Slavery Act.
  • Held human rights awareness seminars (including training on harassment) 190 times for around 8,000 participants.
  • Conducted a human rights survey for 254 consolidated Group companies in Japan and overseas.

Future Challenges and Approaches

Based on the human rights risks identified through human rights impact assessment (including potential risks) and the findings from the human rights survey conducted at our Group companies worldwide, we will strive to make systematic improvements and implement monitoring. We will also conduct surveys on domestic Group companies regarding human rights risks peculiar to Japan such as with foreign technical trainees and work to create a framework to avoid and mitigate these risks. In addition, we will communicate with human rights experts and stakeholders to deepen our understanding of human rights issues and focus on global trends. We will also provide ongoing education and enrichment on respect for human rights to prevent issues and all forms of discrimination in the workplace.

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Policy on Respect for Human Rights

Toshiba Group's policy on human rights is stipulated in the Article 1 Respect for Human Rights in the Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group, which Toshiba Group's executives and employees must adhere. The policy was formulated with reference to international norms and guidelines such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises and ISO26000. As part of this policy, we will demand to take corrective actions not only from Toshiba Group executives and employees but also from our suppliers for any human rights violations found. At the same time we will start our dialogues with relevant stakeholders.
The corporate officer in charge of Human Resources and Administration Div. is responsible for the operation of this policy.

Policy on Respect for Human Rights

1. Toshiba Group Corporate Policy

Toshiba Group Companies shall:

  • (1) comply with all applicable laws and regulations concerning human rights in each country and region, understand international standards, and respect human rights, and shall not condone use of either child labor or forced labor;
  • (2) take appropriate measures in the event that Toshiba Group becomes aware of violation of human rights and demand that suppliers redress any violations of human rights; and
  • (3) seek to raise awareness among related stakeholders with respect for human rights.

2. Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group for Toshiba Group Directors and Employees

Directors and Employees shall:

  • (1) accept and accommodate different values, and respect the character and personality of each individual, observe the right to privacy and human rights of each individual; and
  • (2) avoid any violation of human rights based on race, religion, sex, national origin, physical disability, age or sexual orientation, and avoid physical abuse, sexual harassment, power harassment (i.e., bullying or harassment by superiors in the office) or violation of the human rights of others;

Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group

Toshiba Group has declared its commitment to participate in the UN Global Compact, which supports universal principles on human rights and labor, referring to the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. We put these principles into practice to realize our human rights policy and conduct our business activities.

Some of the international standards and guidelines on human rights that we refer to in the course of our corporate activities:

  • UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights
  • OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises
  • OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct
  • UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
  • UN Guiding Principles Reporting Framework
  • ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work
  • ILO Tripartite Declaration of Principles concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy
  • UN Global Compact
  • ISO 26000 (Guidance on social responsibilities)
  • GRI Standards
  • Responsible Business Alliance Code of Conduct (RBA)

We recognize the importance of implementing our human rights policies not only within the Group but also throughout our supply chain. To this end, we stipulate this policy as Supplier Expectations in Toshiba Group Procurement Policy and request all parties' adherence. We monitor through the annual CSR surveys.

Toshiba Group Procurement Policy

Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement

Toshiba Group has issued statements on slave labor and human trafficking based on the UK Modern Slavery Act and the Australian Modern Slavery Act.

Toshiba Corporation (PDF:152KB)

Toshiba International (Europe) Ltd (PDF:488KB)

Toshiba Information Systems(UK) Limited (PDF:376KB)

Toshiba TEC U.K. Imaging Systems

Toshiba (Australia) Pty Ltd (PDF:401KB)

Past statements

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Structure for Promoting Respect for Human Rights

Led by Human Rights Enrichment Committee, chaired by the corporate officer in charge of human resources and general affairs, Toshiba plans and executes training courses covering key topics on human rights to educate and enlighten employees under the basic principle of Respect for Human Rights. Human Resources and Administration Division serves as the office for the Human Rights Enrichment Committee, formulating basic policies for human rights awareness and enforcing them Group-wide, establishing an internal promotion system, drafting and promoting Group-wide policy on education and training, preparing training materials, developing instructors, following up on the progress of training, consulting and coordinating with outside organizations, and providing instructions and support to promote the concept of Respect for Human Rights throughout Toshiba Group.

Promotion Structure

Promotion Structure

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Identification and Monitoring of Human Rights Risks

Toshiba Group continuously investigates potential human rights risks in its business activities through reviews on ISO 26000. In FY2017, we once again performed a human rights impact assessment in each business in collaboration with Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), an US-based non-profit organization that promotes CSR, in order to further understand how our business activities impact human rights issues and recognize the following priorities.

Human Rights Impact Assessment: Methodology

Human Rights Impact Assessment: Methodology

Major Human Rights Issues Identified by the Human Rights Impact Assessment

Based on the result, we grasp the situation in each company regarding human rights concerns, which vary depending on the business area, country or region, and make the appropriate response when an issue arises. Also, to ensure ongoing monitoring, we perform human rights surveys (human rights due diligence) targeting our Group companies worldwide and CSR surveys targeting our suppliers, as well as mineral procurement surveys, etc.

Surveys on human rights (Human rights due diligence)

CSR surveys targeting our suppliers

Responsible Minerals Sourcing Survey

Human Rights Due Diligence Process

Human Rights Due Diligence Process

Human rights surveys are conducted as part of the Risk Assessment Programs of the Toshiba Group Risk Management System, with content that centers on child labor and forced labor. Based on the results of the FY2019 survey, we uncovered some concerns related to foreign migrant workers at a Group company in Malaysia, which subsequently made improvements, including revising its recruitment policy to comply with the RBA Code of Conduct. In addition to the survey on child labor and forced labor, we conducted a survey related to foreign technical trainees in Japan, and as a result, confirmed proper implementation of technical training for foreigners as stipulated by the Ministry of Justice, compliance with Act on Proper Technical Intern Training and Protection of Technical Intern Trainees (Technical Intern Training Act) and response in accordance with Operational Guidelines for the Technical Intern Training Program issued by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.

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Education and Enrichment on Respect for Human Rights

Our Human Rights Enrichment Committee is the driving force to raise awareness about respect for human rights among employees. It aims to increase the familiarity of all employees at the facilities and Group companies with the Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group and provide trainings on human rights at the time of hire and before/after employees get promoted or appointed to managerial positions.

Human Rights Awareness Seminars

Various human rights awareness seminars were implemented at Toshiba Group companies in Japan 190 times in FY2019, with around 8,000 participants. This includes training for general personnel and executives concerning human rights issues, training for new recruits, training for promoted employees and training for recruitment interviewers.

Human Rights Week Lecture

In December every year during Human Rights Week, Toshiba holds a Human Rights Week Memorial Lecture at the Toshiba headquarters as a Toshiba Group CSR month event. In FY2019, an outside lecturer gave a talk on the importance of media literacy in ensuring that social media users are not perpetrators of human rights violations titled What is media literacy? —You as content creator in a world of social media. Around 90 managers from human resources and administration departments of Toshiba Group companies attended.

Disclosure of Risk Management Case Studies Regarding Human Rights

Toshiba publishes case studies from outside the company regarding violation of human rights on our company intranet, in order to improve employee awareness. We summarize and introduce the key points of management risks, and related laws in a comprehensive fashion.

Workshops on Human Rights

In order to promote the understanding of human rights issues within Toshiba Group, we hold workshops on human rights at various locations.

Records of Workshops on Human Rights
Time Place Participants Contents
Jan. 2020 Japan Approximately 150 staff member who work for CSR promotion, harassment consulting service, and diversity promotion
  • Implementing training and a workshop run by an outside instructor to promote understanding of LGBT
  • Implementing training and a workshop run by an in-house instructor on recent trends related to harassment
Mar. 2019 Japan 24 CSR promotion staff in Toshiba Group
  • Deepening understanding of the importance of human rights due diligence based on UN Guiding principles on Business and Human Rights
  • Learning how to identify potential risks and avoid and prevent them through case studies at a human rights workshop
Mar. 2018 Japan 40 CSR promotion staff in Toshiba Group
  • Implementing a study session and a workshop run by outside instructors on global trends on human rights, the background to human rights issues and the risk of human rights violation in business
  • Verifying human rights risks in the value chain for each business group in the workshop
Apr. 2015 Thailand 33 people and managers from general affairs and human resources, procurement departments of 14 Toshiba Group companies in Thailand
  • Learning about global human rights issues, and about human rights violations in Thailand
  • Exchanging opinions and sharing information between Group companies about potential risks in each company
Dec. 2014 Japan 53 people from general affairs and human resources departments of 24 Toshiba Group companies in Japan
  • Learn about global standards on human rights such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
  • Hold a workshop to detect possible human rights risks at each step in each business's value chain
Nov. 2014 China 54 managers from general affairs and Human Resources Departments of 31 Toshiba Group companies in China
  • Learn from case studies about global issues, and potential risks and the impact they might have on our business
Feb. 2014 Philippines 45 managers from human resources department of 9 countries in Asia and others
  • Lectures on cases of human rights violations, and outlines of international principles
  • Group discussions on human rights risks in the country
A human rights workshop held in Japan in March, 2019
A human rights workshop held in Japan in March, 2019

A human rights workshop held in Japan in March, 2019

Prevention of Harassment

The Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group, a code of conduct for executives and employees, prohibits discriminatory behavior related to race, religion, gender, nationality, disability, age, and sexual orientation as well as violence, sexual harassment, and abuse of power (workplace bullying and other forms of harassment).
In accordance with this policy, our employment regulations and collective agreements also prohibit sexual harassment and abuse of power and stipulate disciplinary action for anyone involved in wrongdoing.
We also provide consulting services and training for consulting service staff at each workplace on a regular basis.
In FY2019, we provided training to promote understanding of LGBT+ related issues and recent trends in harassment targeting CSR promotion staff, harassment consulting service staff, and diversity promotion officers within our CSR Forum and as part of training for all staff involved in providing consultation on matters concerning harassment.

A workshop for CSR promotion staff and harassment consulting service staff held on January 2020

A workshop for CSR promotion staff and harassment consulting service staff held on January 2020

A workshop for CSR promotion staff and harassment consulting service staff held on January 2020

Promotion of Diversity and Inclusion

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Establishment of Whistleblower System and Consulting Service

Toshiba Group receives internal reports and consultations concerning human rights through points of contact for employees and client companies.

Whistleblower System Toshiba Hotline for Employees

Toshiba has established the Toshiba Hotline for providing information and consulting on action that may be problematic relative to laws, regulations, social norms, corporate ethics, the Standards of Conduct for Toshiba Group, or internal regulations. The aim of the hotline is to prevent risks related to breaches of compliance such as legal violations and fraudulent transactions, and to promote problem resolution. Under this system, all employees working in the Toshiba Group*1, including non-regular employees, can anonymously consult full-time counselors on concerns they may have on such matters as workplace culture and interpersonal relations, personnel conditions, or harassment, by phone or e-mail etc. Personal information such as department, name and contact details will not be disclosed elsewhere without the consent of the whistleblower or person seeking advice. In addition, internal regulations stipulate that whistleblowers and people seeking advice shall not be subject to unfair treatment.
In FY2019, there were 110 cases concerning harassment and other issues in the workplace were reported to the Toshiba Hotline, and in each case we undertook measures that included conducting hearings with the person concerned and related party after obtaining the consent of the person who made the report.

  • *1. Limited to Toshiba and its domestic consolidated subsidiaries

Whistleblower System Harassment Consultation Center for Employees

Toshiba Group is creating a system that facilitates employee consultation and aims to build an inclusive and comfortable working environment in which counselors address concerns together with the employees. Key Group companies have set up consultation centers to deal with issues related to harassment and have appointed both male and female to serve as counselors.

Whistleblower System for Employees Audit Committee Hotline

Toshiba established an Audit Committee Hotline in FY2015 that allows employees to report directly to the Audit Committee, which is not under the command of the President and COO. The Audit Committee Hotline has been established primarily to prevent any occurrence of compliance violation risks, such as violations of laws and regulations, and improper transactions, as well as to accelerate the resolution of issues.

Whistleblower System Clean Partner Line for Suppliers

In April 2006, Toshiba set up a supplier whistleblower system Clean Partner Line to receive reports from suppliers and business partners to prevent noncompliance and unfair trading practices by employees in charge of procurement and order placements for construction and other works.

Risk Management and Compliance

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Activities with Stakeholders

Participation in Human Rights Initiatives

Toshiba Group is actively participating in initiatives developed by international and industrial organizations to review human rights issues.

  • Human Rights Working Group held by Business for Social Responsibility (BSR), an US-based non-profit organization that promotes CSR (FY2015-)
  • Japan Human Rights Study Forum hosted by BSR, an US-based non-profit organization that promotes CSR (FY2012)
  • Practical discussions on identifying and dealing with human rights issues in the Stakeholder Engagement Program hosted by Caux Round Table (CRT) Japan (FY2014-2017)
  • Human Rights Seminars hosted by Caux Round Table (CRT) Japan, the 2016 Business Human Conference in Tokyo
  • Human Rights Seminars hosted by Caux Round Table (CRT) Japan, the Global Conference on CSR and Risk Management 2014
  • Human Rights Due Diligence Study Group organized by the Global Compact Network Japan (GC-NJ) (FY2013-FY2015 and 2018~)
  • Research on Respect for Human Rights in Business Development in Developing Countries conducted by Business Policy Forum, Japan (BPF) (FY2012)

Support for Human Rights NGOs

The Donated signed mini rugby ball
The Donated signed mini rugby ball

We donated a mini rugby ball signed by the captain of Japan’s national rugby team, Michael Leitch, who belongs to Toshiba Brave Lupus, to a charity auction commemorating the 50th anniversary of Amnesty International Japan. We will continue to support the activities of this organization that aims to realize a society in which the human rights of all people are respected.

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