Respect for Human Rights

Quantitative Research on Human Rights Issues

To identify the most important issues to address, we conducted a research to quantitatively assess the significant impact that could be caused in each business domain and country with respect to the ten human rights issues that is closely related to our operations, based on the human rights database of Verisk Maplecroft, a global risk research and analysis organization. The results showed that the overall risk faced by the business domain in which the Group operates was at a medium-to-low level, and that the potential human rights issues to be given the highest priorities were those related to “labor health and safety”, “proper wage and working hours” and “the rights of indigenous peoples” in the “packaging container” and “iron and steel” industries.

We also conducted interviews with relevant people in the Group to identify supply chains and stakeholders that are deeply connected with the potential human rights issues. As a result, it was revealed that all of our entire supply chain is faced with the issues regarding the “labor health and safety”, “proper wage and working hours” and “the rights of indigenous peoples.” As for the next step, each company in the Group will review and study the results of the human rights impact assessment and engage in specific measures to handle their identified issues.

Participation in the UN Global Compact

The United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) is a worldwide initiative for realizing sustainable growth that ties together the United Nations and the private sector (corporations and organizations). Signatory companies and organizations are asked to support and implement Ten Principles related to human rights, labour, the environment, and anti-corruption.

The Group, which signed up to support the UN Global Compact in October 2022, follows the Ten principles in conducting its business, and takes actions toward achieving SDGs. By doing this, it contributes the realization of a sustainable society. We participate in Global Compact Network Japan, which is a local network of the UN Global Compact. Each working group* studies from implementation examples of other companies, discusses approaches and initiatives on sustainability, and exchanges information. Also, participating companies and organizations jointly produce and publish output and issue communications.

  • Participating working groups in fiscal 2022: ESG, reporting research, supply chain, GC company-internal penetration research, human rights education, human rights due diligence (HRDD), WEPs, environmental management, circular economy, disaster risk reduction (DRR), anti-corruption

Education on Human Rights Issues for Deeper Understanding

e-Learning on Human Rights

To improve understanding of human rights issues, all employees in the Group are provided with opportunities to learn about the Group’s Guidelines of Behavior, which prohibit any discrimination, harassment or abuse.

In fiscal 2021, following the previous two years, we conducted an e-learning program on business and human rights for a total of 850 members (officers and applicable employees of the group companies stated below) who had not yet taken the program. The program uses an online material co-developed by the Asia-Pacific Human Rights Information Center “Hurights Osaka” and Amnesty International Japan. (The completion rate of the program for fiscal 2021 was 99 percent.)

For the three years from fiscal 2019, the program was attended by a total of 5,806 members, who learned about the relationship between business activities and human rights, as well as international norms such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

We will continue to engage in human rights education to ensure that respect for human rights becomes an integral part of our corporate culture.

Group companies joining the program

  • Toyo Seikan Group Holdings
  • Toyo Seikan
    • Honshu Seikan
    • Nippon National Seikan
    • Ryukyu Seikan Kaisha
    • Toyo Seihan
    • Fukuoka Packing
    • TM Pack
    • Japan Bottled Water
    • Toyo Seikan Group Engineering
    • Toyo Mebius
  • Toyo Kohan
    • Fuji Technica & Miyazu
    • Kudamatsu Unyu
    • Toyo Glass Machinery
  • Mebius Packaging
  • Toyo Aerosol Industry
  • Tokan Trading Corporation
  • Tokan Kyoei Kaisha
  • Tokan Kogyo
    • Nippon Tokan Package
    • Tokan Kosan
    • Tokan Takayama
    • Tokan Logitech
    • Sunnap
    • Shosando
  • Nippon Closures
    • Shin-Sankyo-Pd.

Workshop on Corporate Human Rights Issues

In October 2022, TOMATEC invited an external lecturer to hold a workshop on corporate human rights issues as part of the Group’s month-long compliance promotion campaign. More than 100 employees attended the workshop to learn and discuss the links between human rights and the SDGs as well as human rights issues on the Internet and social media, which allow individuals to connect with the rest of the world.

Survey on the Human Rights Conditions of Foreign Employees and Technical Interns

The quantitative survey of human rights issues we conducted in 2019 showed that the most urgent human rights issues for the Group existed in areas of “occupational health and safety,” “appropriate wages and working hours” and “the rights of indigenous peoples.” In response to the results, we carried out another survey on the actual human rights conditions of foreign workers including foreign technical interns at our group companies in Japan. Supported by the Global Alliance for Sustainable Supply Chains (ASSC), a general incorporated association, the survey was conducted at Mebius Packaging’s Ibaraki Plant and Toyo Aerosol Industry’s Mie Plant. It reviewed labor contracts and other documents, checked on site the living environment of foreign workers, and interviewed with 12 workers in their native languages. Based on the latest results, we will conduct checks on human rights issues at other group companies as well and strive for improvement.

Participating in Stakeholder Engagement Program

The Group participated in the 2022 Human Rights Due Diligence Workshop, a Stakeholder Engagement Program hosted by the non-profit organization Caux Round Table Japan. Due to the impact of COVID-19, the program was conducted in a hybrid format, combining in-person and online participation via Zoom.
In the first half session for the “Issues Raised by Experts,” there were discussions on ten issues related to human rights, including issues of internally displaced persons and refugees, starting with those from Ukraine; global concern over plastic pollution; issues of migrant workers (including foreign technical interns) in Japan; and the issue of the vulnerability of personal data in cyber space, which is increasingly being used for business purposes. These discussions helped deepen ou understanding of human rights issues.
In the second half session, members from the Group worked together with other participants from the manufacturing industry on a review of the “sector-specific human rights issues,” which were identified by the Nippon CSR Consortium in 2021 based on the Human Rights Guidance Tool created by United Nations Environment Programme Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) (issued in 2011 and revised in 2014).
Moving forward, we will apply the insights gained from this program to enhance our response to human rights issues.

©2022 Caux Round Table Japan

Human Rights in Labor-Management Relations

The Toyo Seikan Group's Guidelines of Behavior state that "we understand and respect internationally recognized human rights, including freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining and living wages, as well as laws concerning human rights in countries where we operate." We are actively working on sharing information and discussing solutions to various issues with the labor union.
Labor unions have been organized at several group companies. (The union membership rate among the employees of the consolidated group companies is 51.9%.)
At labor-management meetings, we actively discuss various themes, such as work style reform, health and safety, and welfare, to build and maintain sound labor-management relations through communication among management, the union and employees.

Please refer to the Toyo Seikan Group’s Human Rights Policy here.