Investor group targets 27 global household name firms on human trafficking, slavery

Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility issues statement to Apple, Nestlé, DuPont etc.

Faith-based investor coalition the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR) has called on 27 household-name companies such as Apple, Nestlé and DuPont to take a leadership role in abolishing human trafficking and slavery.
The group, comprising 90 investors, is focusing on six high risk sectors – apparel, travel and tourism, retail, technology, agriculture and food & beverages. The full list of targeted companies is below.
The firms are deemed market leaders in high risk categories “with the ability to influence their respective sectors”.

“As investors, we are concerned with the serious material and reputational risks posed by human trafficking and modern day slavery to corporate operations and their supply chains,” the statement says. “We believe progress will be made as companies implement verifiable human rights due diligence processes, work collaboratively with other stakeholders and make transparent what has long been hidden.”
And it adds that beyond the obvious moral aspect, human trafficking and modern day slavery carry “genuine material and reputational risk which could deleteriously impact the value of our investments”.“It is no longer acceptable for companies to avoid this issue: each must do its part to eradicate the threat of human trafficking and slavery within its spheres of influence,” said Lauren Compere of Boston Common Asset Management.

The report was timed to coincide with the US State Department’s release of its 10th global Trafficking in Persons Report.
And it ties in with the California Transparency in Supply Chain Act of 2010 and the Conflict Minerals Special Disclosures Provision of the Dodd-Frank Act.

Targeted companies include:

  • Apparel: Abercrombie & Fitch; Esprit; Kohl’s; Li & Fung.
  • Travel: American Airlines; Intercontinental; US Airlines, Choice Hotels.
  • Retail: Costco; Metro Group; Walgreen’s; Macy’s; Sears.
  • Tech: Apple; Cisco; Lenovo; Canon; Foxconn.
  • Agriculture: Archer-Daniels-Midland; DuPont; Cargill; Olan.
  • Food: Nestlé; Sainsbury’s; Whole Foods, Procter & Gamble; Yum Brands.