Axalta is committed to respecting human rights in all aspects of our business: in our own operations, in our dealings with business partners, and throughout our entire supply chain.
Axalta values all people and respects their individual rights and dignity. Our principles and expectations regarding human rights are outlined in our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics and our Supplier Code of Conduct. These Codes were developed to explicitly outline Axalta’s expectations of our employees, directors, and business partners—including suppliers—regarding respecting human rights. Our Codes and expectations are aligned with several international protocols, including but not limited to:
- The United Nations Global Compact
- The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights
- The Global Sullivan Principles
- The International Labour Organization Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work
- The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises
We provide training to all employees on the Code of Business Conduct and Ethics annually, with periodic refreshers and communications about acting ethically shared throughout the year. Our Supplier Code of Conduct is included in the standard terms and conditions we have with our suppliers, and all suppliers are required to follow the expectations in our Supplier Code of Conduct, one of which is respecting fundamental human rights. Intermediaries such as sales agents, permitting consultants, and logistics providers with which Axalta conducts business are also subject to comprehensive legal and compliance reviews.
In addressing our approach to human rights in our business and our supply chain, for the first time we are using the United Nations Guiding Principles Reporting Framework to guide our disclosure. We continue to advance and improve our programs and monitor emerging issues, striving for continuous improvement.
Ensuring that human rights are respected and upheld throughout our business activities is the responsibility of Axalta’s management, with particular responsibility placed on Axalta’s Procurement, Human Resources, Legal and Compliance, Operations, and Sustainability teams globally. Axalta’s Board of Directors, and specifically the Environment, Health, Safety and Sustainability Committee, has oversight on human rights topics as outlined in the Committee’s charter. Axalta’s senior leaders with responsibility for monitoring and responding to human rights risks regularly report updates to the Committee.
Axalta refreshed our human rights risk assessment in early 2020 for both our internal operations and our supply chain to identify salient human rights risks. We conducted benchmarking of peers and customers, reviewed concerns that were raised during the reporting period from both internal and external stakeholders, and engaged third-party human rights experts to help complete the assessment. Based on the countries where we operate, our business activities, and the suppliers we engage with, we’ve identified the following seven salient human rights risks:
- Forced labor
- Child labor
- Occupational health and safety
- Freedom of association and right to collective bargaining
- Harassment and discrimination
- Working hours
- Living wages
These salient risks are not unique to Axalta, but are inherent to manufacturing companies and their supply chains; we currently do not have documented issues relating to these risks in our business. We recognize that some of these risks are more prevalent in certain countries, operations, or links in our supply chain, and can range in severity. We have management systems, policies, and due diligence processes in place to monitor these risks as described throughout this report. For any concerns that are raised within our own operations, we take immediate action to investigate reports and remedy the risks or issues. Under our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics, Axalta does not tolerate retaliation or discrimination against anyone who makes a report in good faith. As needed, we have rolled out additional training or employee communications to address prevalent risks. For risks that occur within our supply chain, we engage with our suppliers directly to investigate further and identify ways to mitigate the risks. For more information about specific actions we’ve taken with respect to human rights in our supply chain, please see the Minerals Sourcing section of this report.