Amazon: Unions a "risk"
Ethical Consumer will award Amazon the lowest possible mark for its supply chain management in the forthcoming product guide to e:readers (due to be released in April 2013).
A detailed search of the Amazon website, www.amazon.com and the company's 2011 Annual Report found no evidence of a policy to uphold workers' rights with a company supply chain.
However, the company's 2011 Annual Report did state that "the existence of workers’ councils and labor unions" were a "risk" to the business.
Ethical Consumer would expect to see a supply chain policy covering six key issues: no use of forced labour, freedom of association, payment of a living wage, a working week limited to 48 hours and 12 hours overtime, elimination of child labour (under 15 years old, or under 14, if country has ILO exemption) and no discrimination by race, sex etc.
In addition Ethical Consumer would hope to see some information on stakeholder engagement e.g. Membership of multi-stakeholder processes such as the Ethical Trading Initiative along with the disclosure of the results of audits carried out on suppliers. None of this information was apparent on the Amazon site.
The company therefore received Ethical Consumer's worst rating for supply chain management
Ethical Consumer have emailed the company asking for more details on company's policies but have yet to receive a reply.
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Click here for more on how Ethical Consumer rate supply chain management.
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