Responsible business plan: Human rights
We are committed to respect and promote international human rights in our operations and our sphere of influence.
Continue to ensure that human rights considerations are appropriately integrated into policies, processes and practices.
Develop pragmatic approach to human rights audits/ assessments, building on existing programmes.
Use the analysis and outcome from the country HR employment survey to close identified gaps via country specific plans (2 year outreach plan).
- Embed as business as usual.
- Use the Ruggie Guiding Principles “Protect, Respect & Remedy” Framework to assess AstraZeneca’s approach to Human Rights and continued commitment to the UNGC.
- Continued integration of human rights into due diligence process of acquisition deals.
- 100% of significant investment agreements include human rights clauses and / or have undergone human rights screening.
Percentage and total number of significant investment agreements that include human rights clauses or that have undergone human rights screening.
During 2012, we collated and analysed data from our labour review across 106 countries. Results showed that generally our practices are in the main consistent across all countries. Some gaps to ILO standards were identified. See main narrative below for more information.
As a result of the introduction of the new HR operating model 2012 saw the development and introduction of Global Standards and associated processes in Reward & Compensation, Benefits, Talent & Succession, Global Mobility, Recruitment and Performance Management. All will enhance the update of the global People Policy, planned for 2014.
The Legal precedents for partnership agreements require partners to comply with ‘all applicable laws’ – no further provisions, relating to specifics such as Human Rights, are therefore required. The Due Diligence team for any company acquisition automatically includes Human Rights representation and the Human Rights ‘playbook’ for Due Diligence specifies Human Rights as an area to be assessed. Human Rights representation was included in all relevant Due Diligence teams in 2012.
During 2010/2011, we conducted a labour review in all 106 countries where AstraZeneca has employees, focused on ILO core areas including freedom of association and collective bargaining, child labour, discrimination, working hours and wages. As a framework for the review, we used an adaptation of the employment section of the Danish Institute for Human Rights assessment tool for pharmaceutical companies, which was developed with our industry’s help and launched in 2010.
During 2012, we collated and analysed the review data. The results showed that generally our practices are in the main consistent across all countries, based on our mandate that AstraZeneca’s global standards are applied when external national standards do not meet our minimum requirements. There were some gaps to ILO standards identified, in particular that whilst the ‘Wages &Benefits' section delivered 100% positive scores, our Standards do not include a definition of ‘a living wage’ which the ILO principles require. We are confident that our generous reward policies serve our commitment to human rights but without the absolute definition, we recognise the perceived gap to ILO standard. Similarly, our policies clearly state that individual employees are free to choose to belong to a collective and where AstraZeneca currently has such relationships, they will be conducted legally and respectfully. However, we recognise there are some gaps to the pro-active recognition advocated by ILO. We are reviewing these results as part of the wider update of our Global People Policy. This update will also include a review against the Ruggie Guiding Principles “Protect, Respect & Remedy” Framework to assess AstraZeneca’s approach to Human Rights and continued commitment to the UNGC.