Respecting Human Rights

At AkzoNobel, we understand that through our roles as employer, manufacturer, business partner and member of many communities, we can potentially directly and indirectly impact the lives of millions of people. While we are committed to making a positive impact through our products and our community programs, we are aware of the potential negative impact we might cause, contribute to or be linked to. We recognize our responsibility to respect the human rights of all stakeholders across our value chain and are committed to actively and systematically assess (potential) human rights impacts and take action where needed to ensure our impacts on people’s lives are as positive as possible.

As part of our core principles and in line with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), we are committed in our operations and across our value chains to respecting all internationally recognized human rights as set out in the International Bill of Human Rights (consisting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights) and in the International Labour Organization’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

We support the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. We expect all our business partners to respect human rights and apply equivalent principles, and we seek to support them actively in their implementation where needed. Read more about our commitment to respect human rights across our value chain and our governance structure here.

Taking Action     

While we respect all human rights equally and take all human rights impacts seriously, we have prioritized (potential) human rights impacts in accordance with the UNGPs. These are the so-called salient human rights issues; the human rights that are potentially at risk of the most severe negative impact through our activities or business relationships. After an internal and external consultation stakeholder process, we identified four salient issues on which our human rights framework is focused. 

Health and SafetyWorking conditionsDiscrimination and HarassmentModern Slavery

More information on the ongoing determination process of our salient human rights issues can be found here.

Stakeholder Engagement

We understand that identifying salient human rights issues is an ongoing process. While undertaking due diligence - and providing remedy where needed - on the salient human rights issues, we continue to analyze and monitor our potential impacts on human rights across our value chain while paying extra attention to vulnerable groups. We value the engagement with both internal and external stakeholders, such as employees, human rights experts, NGOs and society at large, as Key in these processes. Frank and open dialogue with all our stakeholders enables us to go farther and faster than we could alone.

This webpage is complementary to our annual reporting and will be updated regularly. Please click on the button below to find our Index of Answers that guides you to identify the location of answers to the questions of the UNGP Reporting Framework.