As a global Tier One supplier, AISIN Group creates working environments that respect the working practices of employees with diverse values and enable each of those employees to thrive. As our employees grow together, they raise the value of the company and contribute to the building of a sustainable society.
Basic principles regarding respect for human rights
Respect for human rights is foundational in all of our business activities, and we are keenly aware of the need for us to more thoroughly understand the various human rights issues associated with the activities we carry out in each country and area of business and take appropriate measures.
Human rights are the foundation of sound relationships between management and workers
Under Aisin’s corporate principles, our employees are one of our most important stakeholders, and part of the value we provide is being a company where diversity between individuals is respected and employees think and act autonomously and find growth opportunities, job satisfaction and happy lives. Foundational to this is a fundamental respect for human rights, an essential element in enabling each employee to work without undue stress. For this reason, we implement human resources and labor measures, based on the relevant local laws and ordinances in each country, to build sound relationships between management and workers.
In April 2021, Aisin established the Human Rights Advisory Committee under our Consolidated Business Ethics Committee. This committee discusses policies, frameworks and action plans for AISIN Group to respect internationally recognized human rights and thoroughly fulfill its international human rights obligations and comply with relevant laws and ordinances in the countries where we operate.
Structure of Human Rights Advisory Committee
Scheme for initiatives
Aisin has created a scheme for initiatives to tackle human rights initiatives under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. To fulfill our human rights obligations in all of our business activities, we carry out thorough due diligence about human rights, provide training on human rights, have established consultation services to gather external feedback and are communicating with our stakeholders.
Implementation framework of Human Rights Advisory Committee
AISIN Group Human Rights Policy
In April 2021, Aisin established the AISIN Group Human Rights Policy upon discussion and approval by the Human Rights Advisory Committee. This policy is based on the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and AISIN Group Principles of Corporate Behavior, and supersedes all other policies on matters regarding human rights.
Our Human Rights Policy covers the minimum level of compliance with the International Bill of Human Rights and ILO Core Labour Standards (freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, prohibition of forced labor, effective elimination of child labor, elimination of discrimination in hiring and workplaces, etc.) and is a pledge that AISIN Group will fulfill its responsibility to respect human rights through due diligence.
This policy not only applies to exectuives and employees; we also expect all business partners, including suppliers, to understand and uphold this policy. In addition, we will reflect this policy in related policies and procedures such as employee handbook and the group company management rule, and strive to ensure thorough implementation.
Aisin carries out due diligence regarding human rights according to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and set priority risks each year based on changes in human rights such as the legislation of each country through consultation with outside experts.
In February 2020, as a human resources CSR investigation, we investigated the compliance and human rights initiatives at 200 domestic and overseas companies in AISIN Group (100% were carrying out initiatives) to confirm that there were no serious compliance or human rights violations.
For fiscal year 2022, in recognition of increasingly active movements to protect migrant workers‘ rights, including legislation against modern slavery in countries around the world, and the growing public concern about AISIN Group‘s acceptance of overseas technical trainees in Japan, we consulted with external experts and designated the prohibition of forced labor in migrant labor as a risk area of the highest level.
Forced labor in migrant labor
【Initiatives in Japan】Investigation of state of technical intern training program (supervising organization type)
Aisin group is accepting overseas technical trainees to work in Japan. External experts have pointed out the risk of forced labor situations where, in the case of supervising organizations type, the overseas agency sending the workers and/or the Japanese group coordinating their arrival charges an exorbitant recruitment fee to migrant workers and holds them in debt bondage for that fee. For this reason, we are placing a particular focus on investigating placements of overseas technical trainees.
We investigated the placement of overseas technical trainees in our domestic group companies. As of the end of March 2021, there were around 1,250 technical trainees in 21 companies. These trainees were from Vietnam, China, Indonesia, Myanmar and Thailand, with over two thirds from Vietnam.
Based on this, we are taking the following measures to prevent human rights violations that could occur when we accept overseas technical trainees.
- We conducted regular surveys on the acceptance of foreign technical intern trainees at group companies in Japan regarding operations, treatment, document management, protective measures, supervising organization status, etc., but we have not found any violations that could lead to infringe their human rights.
- Regarding the exorbitant fee charges to migrant workers that can cause forced labor, we are implementing corrective measures on the trainees from Vietnam as a first step.
- Since December 2020, we have joined in "Japan Platform for Migrant Workers towards Responsible and Inclusive Society” and promoted cooperation with various organizations, information gathering, and exchange of opinions with experts. In addition, from June 2022, we have participated in the "JP-MIRAI Pilot Project of Counseling for Foreign Workers" to strengthen the information provision and consultation service functions.
We are also take support measures on the overseas technical trainees who have difficulties to return to their home countries after their training period ends, due to the impacts of COVID-19, and who are in pregnancy and childbirth during the training.
【Initiatives overseas】Execution of migrant labor investigations
In June 2021, Aisin conducted an immigrant labor investigation on 121 overseas group companies to grasp the actual situation of immigrant labor at overseas companies and to identify the risks of forced labor.
In particular, we investigated to determine the number of migrant workers*, the countries the workers migrated from, the percentage of indirect recruitment, and whether there were any possible issues in the recruitment and/or repatriation process (e.g., charging of recruitment fees, withholding of passports or identifi-cation documents, prohibition of return to the home country, etc.).
*In these surveys, “migrant workers” refer to non-regular (contingent, contract, non-permanent, temporary, etc.) foreign national workers with status of residence (non-permanent) for the purpose of employment (excluding expatriates from other companies/countries)
Based on the data gathered, we have determined that no infringements are being placed upon migrant workers at our group companies. We will continue to raise our understanding of forced labor and help prevent it.
Migrant workers at Aisin's overseas group companies (by region)
Training, established activities and consultation services
Aisin takes all employees‘ fundamental human rights seriously and takes every opportunity to educate our employees on human rights, from initial training for new employees to additional training for those receiving a promotion or being appointed as an officer. In addition to common CSR training for 12 group companies in AISIN Group, we invited a guest lecturer from the Aichi Labor Bureau and hold a training seminar on fair recruitment for group companies.
Our compliance consultation service accepts a wide range of questions and allows anonymity. Thorough attention is paid to the rights of those using the service, including privacy and prevention of reprisal, when taking measures. In fiscal year 2022, we are establishing a new AISIN Global Hotline to take compliance inquiries from external stakeholders, and are building a framework to gather feedback on human rights on a wide scope.
Initiatives to eliminate discrimination
Aisin is a member of the Industrial Federation for Human Rights, Aichi, an organization comprising 26 companies in Aichi Prefecture that works with relevant administrative bodies and organizations such as the Aichi prefectural government and Aichi Labor Bureau to raise awareness about human rights. We also work with the Corporate Federation for Dowa and Human Rights Issues in various regions to carry out education and awareness-raising activities in companies with the aim of creating a society where human rights are respected.
Supply chain initiatives
Responsible procurement of minerals (measures against conflict minerals)
In fiscal year 2021, we continued to investigate our supply chain to determine whether conflict minerals were used, as part of our initiatives for responsible procurement of minerals (measures against conflict minerals). The results were reported to our customers.
We are also involved in work by industry organizations to establish effective procurement methods and increase understanding of this issue through presentations. AISIN Group will continue to promote responsible procurement of minerals by promoting appropriate procurement of resources and materials based on the following policy.
Policy on the procurement of minerals
To promote global mineral procurement that takes into account the impact on social issues such as human rights and the environment, we carry out initiatives to avoid the use of minerals that are defined as an issue under the laws and regulations of each country (Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act in the USA, Conflict Minerals Regulation in the EU, etc.). We ask that our suppliers understand our stance on this issue and work with us on the responsible procurement of minerals.