Labor & Human Rights

Labor & Human Rights

We strive to uphold
the highest
standards

We strive to uphold the highest standards

Two women and one man are sitting on lounge chairs around a low table in a bright office space and smiling. The women are shaking hands. Two women and one man are sitting on lounge chairs around a low table in a bright office space and smiling. The women are shaking hands.

We respect the freedom and fundamental rights to which all people are entitled

We ensure equal opportunities for all of our employees and applicants, and we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind. We also respect the freedom of association of all of our employees. Furthermore, we strive to embed and integrate the respect for human rights into our business in order to protect and promote the rights of our employees and people in our supply chain.

Our Framework for Labor and Human Rights

In strong support of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights(UNGPs), we established and embedded our own framework for human rights to identify, prevent, mitigate and account for any adverse human rights impacts across our business activities.

We also endeavor to ensure that our first-tier suppliers undertake the same level of scrutiny of human rights risks as ours at their operations. Further, we oblige them to have their suppliers, or sub-suppliers to Samsung, to apply the same level of our working environment policies.

A diagram of the six Rights & Principles, displayed in a ring of hexagonal shapes: Policies, Due Diligence, Access to Remedy, Transparency and Reporting, Stakeholder Engagement, and Governance. A diagram of the six Rights & Principles, displayed in a ring of hexagonal shapes: Policies, Due Diligence, Access to Remedy, Transparency and Reporting, Stakeholder Engagement, and Governance.

Governance

Our Global Labor Issues(GLI) Committee manages the impacts and risks on labor and human rights. The GLI Committee, which convenes bi-weekly to discuss labor and human rights issues, consists of executives and working-level employees from Six functions(Human Resources Team, Legal Office, Partner Collaboration Center, Corporate Sustainability Center, Global EHS Center, Investor Relations Team). Any important matters are escalated to the Sustainability Council, which consists of key executives, and then reported to the top management.

An illustrative image of the framework in a pyramid  shape. Board of Directors, Governance Committee, Sustainability Council, GLI(Global Labor Issues) Committee are placed from top to bottom. An illustrative image of the framework in a pyramid  shape. Board of Directors, Governance Committee, Sustainability Council, GLI(Global Labor Issues) Committee are placed from top to bottom.

Policies

We have established a robust set of labor and human rights policies based on Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights(UNGPs); Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development(OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises; UN Convention on the Rights of the Child(UNCRC); International Labor Organization(ILO) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. We abide by the Code of Conduct of the Responsible Business Alliance(RBA) and comply with the laws and regulations of the countries where we conduct our business.

A close-up view of a man's hands typing on a laptop computer, with an illustrated image of a document with a checklist projected in front of the computer screen. A close-up view of a man's hands typing on a laptop computer, with an illustrated image of a document with a checklist projected in front of the computer screen.

Global Code of Conduct and Guidelines

All employees are obliged to comply with the ‘Global Code of Conduct’ and ‘Business Conduct Guidelines’, which are part of our efforts to be more responsible in our business activities.

Labor policies

We develop and implement a set of policies dedicated to protecting vulnerable groups.

  • Child Labor Prohibition Policy
    379 KB
  • Migrant Worker Policy
    658 KB
  • Student Worker Policy in China
    185 KB
  • Guidelines for Apprenticeship in India
    179 KB
  • Guidelines on the Prevention of Harassment
    168 KB

We have been providing our employees with training programs tailored to each worksite, with the aim of complying with our human rights policies and raising awareness about respecting human rights. In collaboration with UN agencies, as well as organizations specialized in business and human rights education, we strive to increase their capabilities in dealing with labor and human rights topics by offering training customized to job functions. After developing training materials tailored to job responsibilities of all employees in collaboration with BSR, we launched our comprehensive labor and human rights training program in 2020. We will continue to deliver customized training to any relevant topics.

Due diligence

We operate a system equipped with both internal and external protocols in order to identify and monitor human rights risks at our worksites and across our supply chain.

A man wearing a neon safety vest and a woman wearing business attire are standing beside shelves in a large packing warehouse and referring to a list on a clipboard. A man wearing a neon safety vest and a woman wearing business attire are standing beside shelves in a large packing warehouse and referring to a list on a clipboard.

Our worksites

We evaluate the level of labor and human rights compliance and monitor activities for improvement using three different protocols; RBA on-site audit, Samsung Electronics Internal Risk Assessment, Human Rights Impact Assessment(HRIA).

A close-up view of a person's gloved hands placing Galaxy S21 smartphones into black packaging boxes on a green work surface. A close-up view of a person's gloved hands placing Galaxy S21 smartphones into black packaging boxes on a green work surface.

Responsible Business Alliance on-site audit

As a member of the Responsible Business Alliance(RBA), we apply the RBA Code of Conduct to our worksite management. Based on the results of RBA SAQ(Self-Assessment Questionnaire) by our worksites, we select six or seven of them every year and apply the RBA on-site audit protocol to identify working environment risks at those worksites. According to the protocol, a third party audit firm approved by RBA carries out audits in terms of labor, health and safety, environment, ethics and management systems. If any finding is identified, the worksites shall submit and implement a corrective action plan.

Samsung Electronics internal
risk assessment

  • 01. Select assessment targets

    Select six to seven worksites every year that are required to increase capabilities and make overall improvements based
    on the monitoring
    system’s assessment results.

    Our worksite
    monitoring system

    It supports the enforcement of
    labor and human rights standards
    and compliance management, as a
    monitoring system to assess
    our
    working environment, workplace culture, representative bodies, and management of suppliers, etc.

  • 02. Audit team setup

    Organize an expert group comprised of employees qualified including certified RBA auditors.

  • 03. Self assessment

    Self assessment of sites based on the inspection checklist

  • 04. On-site audit

    Conduct an on-site audit based on Samsung Electronics Standards

  • 05. Follow-up management

    Share inspection results with the management team of respective worksite

    Establish future improvement plans and measures to prevent recurrence within one week from the completion
    of inspection

    Implement improvement tasks by
    forming a task force consisting of
    experts in human resources and environmental safety

    Monitor progress of improvement tasks on a monthly basis via worksite monitoring system

Human Rights Impact Assessment (HRIA)

We conduct human rights impact assessments to identify actual and potential risks to and adverse impacts on human rights that we may have caused, are linked to, or have contributed to. Our first human rights impact assessment was carried out in Vietnam in 2018. At that time, to maintain an objective point of view in the process, we collaborated with BSR(Business for Social Responsibility), a non-profit organization specialized in business and human rights.

We strive to address the issues identified in due diligence with remediation, mitigation and prevention measures in place including developing and revising policies, providing capacity-building programs and improving work processes across our operations.

Supply chain

We align our Supplier Code of Conduct with the RBA Code of Conduct and share the updates with our suppliers. We also provide a guide to help them comply with the Code of Conduct and implement compliance management in their operation. In accordance with RBA’s verification standards, we regularly monitor all of our suppliers to make sure they identify issues and make necessary improvements. Our 1st-tier suppliers are also required to encourage their suppliers, or sub-suppliers to Samsung, to ensure safe working environment.

A close-up view of a man wearing a safety helmet, safety glasses and thick gloves. He is outside and holds a small piece of raw metal material in front of his face towards the camera. A close-up view of a man wearing a safety helmet, safety glasses and thick gloves. He is outside and holds a small piece of raw metal material in front of his face towards the camera.

Access to remedy

Our grievance resolution procedure is based on the “Effectiveness criteria of non-judicial grievance mechanisms” stipulated in the 31st clause of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. Anyone can raise a formal complaint and must not be discriminated or face retribution for raising the complaint. We endeavor to ensure the procedure is transparent and the rights of those involved are respected at all steps of the procedure. We also guarantee anonymity of anyone who files a complaint.

A close-up view of 3 to 4 people's hands clasped together and with palms stacked on top of each other in a caring group gesture. A close-up view of 3 to 4 people's hands clasped together and with palms stacked on top of each other in a caring group gesture.

Grievance reporting channels

We operate various grievance channels taking into account the characteristics of the worksite and local situations.

01. Online

Company intranet

02. Offline

Suggestion boxes placed in area with no CCTV

03. Hotline

Call or email

04. Committee

Works council, employee committee

05. Mobile

Company intranet application

06. SNS

Company communication channel

※ Channels for external stakeholders : https://sec-audit.com | civilsociety@samsung.com

※ Channels for external stakeholders : 
    https://sec-audit.com 
    civilsociety@samsung.com

Grievance resolution procedure

  • 01

    Grievance
    report

    Notification of
    receipt
    within 24
    hours

    Employees and
    external
    stakeholders
    report all
    grievances
    related to the
    company

    A case manager is
    designated

  • 02

    Grievance confirmation
    and review

    Within 5 days of
    receipt

    Confirm details and
    facts
    of reported
    grievance

    Listen to grievant
    about
    desired
    measures

    Review remedial
    measures
    according to
    confirmed
    details

  • 03

    Results
    notification

    Within 7 days of
    receipt

    Deliver results of
    review
    and gather
    feedback from
    grievant

  • 04

    Grievance
    resolution

    Varies by case

    Grievance is resolved
    through measures
    such
    as
    training, disciplinary
    action against the
    accused, providing
    useful
    information or
    support,
    and
    improving
    infrastructures, related
    policies and procedures

※ If each step is not processed by the time frame
due to reasonable reason, the grievant will be
notified of specific reason

Transparency & reporting

We report in detail on how we respect labor and human rights across our business activities in our Sustainability Report based on the GRI standard among others.

In addition, under the UK Modern Slavery Act, we report our annual statements to the Modern Slavery Registry.
We are one of the selected companies by two most influential industry benchmarks; the Corporate Human Rights Benchmark(CHRB) and Know the Chain(KTC). While CHRB focuses on comparing and assessing companies in terms of human and labor rights, KTC closely looks at forced labor issues.

A bird's eye image of a laptop computer, a cup of coffee, and a bound and printed copy of the Samsung Electronics Modern Slavery Act Statement sitting on a desk. A bird's eye image of a laptop computer, a cup of coffee, and a bound and printed copy of the Samsung Electronics Modern Slavery Act Statement sitting on a desk.

Stakeholder engagement

We continue to engage with global stakeholders to foster the culture of respect for human rights not only in our business but also in our industry. In developing policies and training programs, we collaborate with organizations or agencies specialized in human rights and participate in various multilateral initiatives.

Since 2018, we have hosted multi-stakeholder forums in Vietnam every year. In 2020, we held the 3rd forum in cooperation with VCCI(Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry) and VGCL(Vietnam General Federation of Labor) and had a discussion under the theme "Covid-19 Crisis Management and Countermeasures, Human Resources Management and Technology Change after Covid-19 Pandemic". The forum welcomed more than 200 stakeholders, including experts and guests from NGOs, media, and academia.

A photo of the President of Samsung Vietnam speaking at the Samsung 2020 Multi-Stakeholder Forum: “Managing Crisis in a Socially Responsible Manner: Experience Sharing from Coping with Covid-19 Pandemic" in Hanoi, Vietnam. A photo of the President of Samsung Vietnam speaking at the Samsung 2020 Multi-Stakeholder Forum: “Managing Crisis in a Socially Responsible Manner: Experience Sharing from Coping with Covid-19 Pandemic" in Hanoi, Vietnam.

In collaboration with the International Organization of Migration(IOM), we have hosted several workshops on Modern Slavery and Ethical Recruitment, which are participated by our employees, suppliers, and business partners at worksites in Hungary, Slovakia, and Malaysia. The workshops have served as a great opportunity to raise awareness about the protection of migrant workers’ human rights and to share the importance of eradicating forced labor.

Working with the German development agency(GIZ), and partners like BMW Group and BASF, we have launched “Cobalt for Development(C4D)”, a pilot project at an artisanal cobalt mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo. As part of the project, we are carrying out various activities to help bring about real progress to the local community, such as providing occupational safety training for local miners and building new elementary and secondary schools for local children.