Beckers has a significant global presence and for us it is part of our core values to respect human and especially children's rights in our operations and the value chain. We conduct our day-to-day business according to key ethical principles that are defined in our Code of Conduct.
Based on our materiality assessment we developed three different streams in which we categorized ➜ our material topics. Moreover, due to a major review of the assessment in 2022, we have identified two new topics as material. In ➜ Value Governance we take responsibility for our business activities and ensure our moral compass is applied in all our business decisions. Furthermore, human and children’s rights are anchored at the core of our business. Both material topics are summarized under Governance.
”As a business, our activities affect many people in our own operations and throughout the value chain. We are committed to making this impact a postive one.”
We are deeply convinced that the protection and support of Human and Children’s Rights along our entire value chain, inside our company as well as outside, provide the basis of our long-term success.
At Beckers, we have always understood the protection of human and children’s rights as a commitment at the core of our business. In 2022, we made it one of our material topics. Compliance with ➜ our Code of Conduct, laws and other commitments is continuously monitored by the management of the Group. The Chief Financial Officer holds the dual role of Compliance Officer and oversees compliance on a global level. All policies and commitments mentioned here are signed by Beckers Executive Committee and validated by the Beckers Board of Directors. They are updated on a regular basis, displayed on all sites centrally and made available to all employees on the Beckers Intranet and/or our website, via copies for individuals – for example, during onboarding.
By highlighting Human Rights as a ➜ material topic on ➜ our 2030 Agenda, we add transparency to our efforts and underscore how Beckers is taking a leading role in addressing deep social inequalities exacerbated by global crises in recent years.
As a globally operating manufacturer, we face potential risks in our value chain. We take very seriously the risks of forced labor, human trafficking and modern slavery as well as possible violations of children’s rights through, for example, child labor. We know that this global phenomenon, in which people are forced into working conditions that endanger their health, safety and human dignity, can also happen in our value chain. Therefore, we have developed policies, due diligence procedures and processes to prevent and address possible human rights violations for our own operations. Our Code of Conduct training raises awareness about modern slavery and child labor, and we have established internal reviews for all sites. We adhere to ILO child labor conventions for workers in hazardous jobs and we are already working with NGOs to ensure compliance and to rectify the situation should cases of forced or child labor be discovered.
For our supply chain we are working with ➜ our Chain-Up program. To monitor the social and environmental sustainability of all our suppliers, we use a three-step process and ask our raw material suppliers to conduct ➜ EcoVadis assessments which cover labor and human rights issues. Should any incidents arise, we will take appropriate measures to eradicate all forms of child and forced labor. Our impact on this issue, how we ensure that our suppliers comply with our standards and how we manage this can be viewed under the management approach for ➜ supply chain sustainability.
Children’s rights are at the heart of what we do, and we are committed to diligence and driving change in this area. At Beckers, we condemn any form of child and forced labor. We are not aware of any incidents of child or forced labor in our operations.
Complementary to our key principles for children’s rights stated in our Code of Conduct, we have made even further efforts in this area. We have committed to making children and youth a key focus of our global and local community engagement. All our community and charity projects are measured against their impact on children and youth in the communities where we operate. We have identified aspects where we have an indirect impact on children and we are aware of it and it is integrated in the people pyramid. In cooperation with the Global Child Forum (GCF) and the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), our parent company Lindéngruppen has developed the Children’s Rights and Business Workbook. This hands-on guide aims to integrate a childrens right’s perspective into business processes and helps Beckers to understand and navigate. We follow the steps in the business workbook and report on the progress we are making.
We take a systematic approach to protecting children's rights and are engaging with these issues on a much deeper level. At Beckers, part of our commitment to our owner Lindéngruppen is to implement all steps outlined in the children’s rights and Business Workbook at Beckers. This guidance document was developed by the Global Child Forum together with Boston Consulting Group and Lindéngruppen. The Global Child Forum is a non-profit organization which aims to help companies understand and handle their children’s rights impacts and invest in programs to support children. We are also a member of the Global Child Forum’s Business Sounding Board, which discusses strategic ideas around improving children’s lives.
Furthermore, we have started a strategic collaboration with ➜ Save the Children. Within this collaboration, we reviewed all of our policies and commitments to assess how well they covered all aspects of children’s rights in 2022. No major gaps were found and we are now in the process of updating the documents.
We encourage and expect our stakeholders to report any incidents of non-compliance or suspected non-compliance with our Code of Conduct. We have established several whistleblowing channels to protect the anonymity of those reporting. The whistleblowing tool is accessible through our website.
Engagement in our communities is one of our material topics. Here we have a special focus on children and youth and also partner with international NGOs. In March 2022, for example, we partnered with UNICEF on a global level to support children and youth in Ukraine.
Across all company levels – from executives and managers to line employees – and towards all stakeholders we follow fundamental business principles and high business ethics standards according to ➜ our Code of Conduct. Our Code of Conduct provides a detailed set of principles that bring our values to life and applies equally to all co-workers and directors. Thereby, all our operations and as well as subcontractors and suppliers must adhere to the same key internationally accepted ethical principles like the ➜ United Nations Global Compact, the ➜ Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, the ➜ Children's Rights and Business Principles and the ➜ Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Based on and complementary to our Code of Conduct, ➜ our Supplier Code of Conduct defines our basic requirements for all suppliers of goods and services.
Due to our values, ethical principles and commitments, we contribute to the achievement of the ➜ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) decent work and economic growth (SDG 8) as well as responsible consumption and production (SDG 12).
For further information on the SDGs click here.