The Guiding Principles at Toyota and the Toyota Code of Conduct (established in 1998; revised in 2006), which consolidates Toyota's approach to putting these principles into practice, as well as the CSR Policy: Contribution towards Sustainable Development, which was drawn up in 2008, contain the concept of respecting and honoring the human rights and other rights of all the people involved in Toyota's business. Further, of the two pillars of the Toyota Way."Continuous Improvement" and "Respect for People"."Respect for People" refers to respect for all stakeholders as well as respect for the character and abilities of employees as individuals and facilitating personal achievement by linking the personal growth of employees to company performance. Thus, putting the Toyota Way into practice means respecting human rights. The Toyota Way is the moral foundation for sharing common values with all business units across the world. In addition, various measures are implemented so that employees can work with confidence, vigor, and enthusiasm. Efforts are also made to fully reflect and put into practice such concepts throughout Toyota's global business activities, which includes subsidiaries and suppliers.
Toyota established in-house CSR Indices to confirm whether business is being executed in line with the concept of respect for human rights, and follow-up is performed for the various functions each year. Toyota requests the implementation of voluntary inspection activities for consolidated compliance once a year at its subsidiaries in Japan, and once every two years at overseas subsidiaries. As a part of this initiative, starting in 2012, subsidiaries have been requested to propose and implement improvement measures addressing human rights and labor issues based on the result of the inspections. In 2012, requests to propose and implement improvement measures were made to those subsidiaries where opportunities for improvement were identified from among Toyota's 119 subsidiaries in Japan and 174 overseas subsidiaries. For suppliers, Toyota established and distributed the Toyota Supplier CSR Guidelines in 2009, which clearly state Toyota's expectations of its suppliers and Toyota's policy of respect for human rights. In addition, Toyota used to request each company to perform self-inspections based on the guidelines. Toyota revised the Toyota Supplier CSR Guidelines at the end of 2012, confirmed conditions using a table of questions that was newly incorporated as a part of its efforts to enhance human rights and labor-related initiatives, and is now making requests for improvement as necessary and following-up to confirm that improvements are made. Toyota will continue to listen to the views of stakeholders and further undertake various types of measures to reflect these views in management.
Toyota is responding to changes in circumstances such as heightened social demands concerning human rights by continuously enhancing and reviewing its corporate initiatives. For example, in conjunction with the reinforcement of the due diligence concept and the introduction and revision of international norms based on this approach, a Human Rights and Labor CSR Countermeasures Working Group was established in 2011 to incorporate various functions including corporate planning, overseas external affairs, audit, legal affairs, accounting, and human resources with the aim of researching various international norms and investigating measures that Toyota should take. Based on the Group's work, proposals to reinforce and review various CSR measures relating to human rights and labor were made to the CSR Committee, which is now moving towards implementation. The Working Group remains active in 2013, and the reinforcement of measures addressing subsidiaries and suppliers mentioned above is one result of the Group's work.
Civilians in certain regions around the world are being subjected to massacres, plunder, abduction, conscription of child soldiers, and other inhumane conduct as a result of armed conflict, thereby giving rise to international condemnation. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, which is located in central Africa, the unlawful mining and smuggling of the country's abundant mineral resources is said to be a major source of funding for armed groups.
Toyota undertakes business with a strong awareness that violations of human rights, environmental degradation, unlawful mining, and other issues in these conflict regions, as well as the issues of minerals that provide sources of funding to armed groups through such actions, are major social issues concerning the supply chain.
As a global enterprise, Toyota adopted "Toyota's Policies and Approaches to Conflict Minerals Issues," which have been implemented internally and by its consolidated subsidiaries in Japan and overseas with the aim of not using any conflict minerals —which are relating to illegal conduct including human rights infringement —as raw materials. Toyota is further addressing the issues in the supply chain by asking suppliers to engage in responsible material procurement in accordance with the Toyota Supplier CSR Guidelines.
In 2011, Toyota established the Conflict Minerals Task Force, consisting of representatives from relevant departments within the company, to begin considering the actions to be taken regarding conflict minerals. Toyota has also participated in a working group of the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG*2) on conflict minerals and promoted the consideration of unified action to be jointly taken by the automobile industry. In addition, Toyota has worked with other Japanese automobile manufacturers and the Japan Auto Parts Industries Association (JAPIA*3) to establish an investigation method that will effectively and efficiently assess the usage status of conflict minerals and which also takes impact on suppliers into consideration. The automotive industry as a whole agreed to adopt the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition/Global e-Sustainability Initiative (EICC*4-GeSI*5) Conflict Minerals Reporting Template standardized by the electronic industry. In 2012, Toyota conducted a survey of suppliers who are JAPIA members and asked them to identify their smelters. In 2013, Toyota asked more than 7,000 suppliers globally to respond to the survey including companies which are first tier suppliers of its consolidated companies in Japan and overseas.
The automotive supply chain is wide and complex. Therefore, in order to help second-tier suppliers and beyond gain a better understanding of the issues of conflict minerals, Toyota is also helping industry organizations, for example by providing report form completion guidelines and survey result summarization tools, and by supporting for seminars in cooperation with JAPIA and Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association (JEITA*6). On a global scale, Toyota has had its overseas subsidiaries explain the issues to their suppliers to seek their understanding and conduct surveys in the same way as in Japan. The surveys have been carried out in Toyota's automotive business as well as all other business areas. Toyota has reported the survey results to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and also posted them on Toyota's website.
In the 2013 survey, Toyota could not determine if its used materials are conflict-free or not, as many of upstream suppliers could not identify their trading smelters/mines. In addition, for some smelters and recycling firms that suppliers identified as their sources of minerals, it could not be confirmed whether or not they were indeed smelters and recycling firms based on information available for public, such as corporate websites. In such circumstances, Toyota has strived to confirm details of smelters in cooperation with other auto makers, parts manufacturers, and other industries including the electronics industry. In Japan, through the Japan Conflict-free Sourcing Working Group consisting of volunteer companies, Toyota cooperates for identification of smelters by providing the Conflict-Free Sourcing Initiative (CFSI*7) with information on smelters etc. Toyota has also asked concerned smelter organizations relating to the subject minerals in Japan to identify smelters and asked each smelter to gain Conflict-Free Smelter (CFS) certification.
Toyota has taken actions in line with "OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains of Minerals from Conflict-Affected and High-Risk Areas," and it will continuously conduct surveys on use of conflict minerals and ask for understanding and cooperation from the upstream supply chain through its first-tier suppliers in and after 2014. However, Toyota recognizes that asking its suppliers not to use the subject minerals originated in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country regardless of the possibility of human rights infringement could decrease legal mineral trades in the area, which could not lead a genuine solution of the issues. With these recognitions, in addition to asking suppliers to cooperate to ensure responsible material procurement, Toyota continuously strives for solution of the conflict minerals issues through initiatives that cut across industry boundaries. Specifically, Toyota consistently asks smelters to gain CFS certificates in cooperation with the auto industry and other industries in order to encourage upstream supply chain smelters to avoid using conflict minerals related to human rights infringement etc. Toyota also communicate and collaborate with human-rights NGOs and other organizations by participating in the Public-Private Alliance for Responsible Minerals Trade (PPA*8) , which is a hub for the U.S. government, corporations, industry organizations and NGOs, and the conflict-free sourcing initiative (CFSI) through AIAG which promotes acquisition of CFS certifications to support conflict-free initiatives.
We-Toyota Motor Corporation and its subsidiaries promote obtainment of materials with full deliberation and care to avoid the procurement or usage of materials which are unlawful or which are obtained through unethical or otherwise unacceptable means. We recognize that the issue of conflict minerals originating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country is one of the significant social issues among supply chains. We aim at procurement and usage that are free from conflict minerals originating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or an adjoining country and relating to illegal conduct including human rights infringement. To realize such procurement and usage, we conduct inquiries tracing back through our supply chains and confirm if conflict minerals are used. In addition, we take appropriate steps to discontinue procurement of materials that can cause social problems or finance armed groups, if such usage is detected. Based on mutually beneficial relationships, we ask our suppliers to understand our policies and approaches and to promote responsible material procurement.
Toyota believes basic literacy is essential for success in school and work. Toyota Motor North America (TMA) has partnered with the National Center for Family Literacy (NCFL) to run the Toyota Family Literacy Program (TFLP) throughout North America, working to increase the literacy level of both parents and children. Focusing on the fact that children whose parents do not read or write English tend to have a lower literacy level, this program aims to break this cycle by providing a place where parents and children can learn together. The program initially targeted preschoolers and their parents, but is now focused on immigrant families. The program marked its 20th year in 2011.
What does the program mean to me? Everything! The parenting skills I received empowered me to become a better mother. My dream of completing my education finally came true. Today I am a college graduate, my daughter is a college senior, my son just finished high school, and my husband is working on his Associate degree in Business Administration.
Breaking the cycle of illiteracy