Respect for Human Rights

Related ESG: S SDGs10
Respect for human rights

Management approach

Policy and approach

Respecting human rights is essential for the Toyobo Group to fulfill its responsibilities as a member of society and continue as a trusted company. Within this, respecting the rights of employees and trading partners, who are important stakeholders for the Group, is crucial to enable them to work with vigor and energy. This is the essence of the One-Third Thoughts* approach to strengthening business foundation, a concept which is important to the Group. In this way, recognizing the importance of this issue, we have included “respect for human rights” and “active employee participation” within the 10 principles that make up our Charter of Corporate Behavior. We have also positioned them as relevant materialities and fundamental prerequisites to materialities and are advancing initiatives accordingly. As a statement of this intent, in January 2020, the Group became a signatory to the UN Global Compact. The UN Global Compact is a voluntary initiative in which companies participate creating a global framework for solving global issues as responsible corporate citizens and realizing sustainable growth. Signatory companies are required to constantly strive to realize these goals based on a leadership commitment to complying with 10 principles in the four areas of human rights, labor, environment, and anti-corruption. In October 2020, we revised the TOYOBO Group Charter of Corporate Behavior and also formulated the TOYOBO Group Human Rights Policy based on the 10 principles of the UN Global Compact and other international requirements. Additionally, the Group complies with laws and regulations in the countries and regions in which we do business and provide employees with appropriate compensation that exceeds stipulated minimum wages.

  • * To give equal priority to three aspects of the Company: its current performance, future growth and our business foundation

<TOYOBO Group Human Rights Policy>

Over a history of almost 140 years, the Toyobo Group has developed business that addresses the needs and challenges of the times through technology, based on the spirit of Jun-Ri-Soku-Yu (adhering to reason leads to prosperity), which is the cornerstone of the PVVs corporate philosophy system.

At present, under our vision of "we will continue to create the solutions needed by people and the earth with materials and science," we are working to evolve into a company that can "help society flourish and our Company grow" by actively contributing to solving social issues and continuously creating value for society.

We believe that respecting human rights is crucial to achieving the Group's vision, and in the TOYOBO Group Charter of Corporate Behavior ("Charter") and the TOYOBO Group Employee Conduct Standards ("Code") we have stated that we respect human rights and maximize the value that can be generated from diversity under the slogan "respect for human rights and diversity."

The TOYOBO Group Human Rights Policy ("this policy") outlines our policy for handling human rights based on the Charter and Code and it applies to all of the Group’s directors, corporate auditors, executive officers, and employees.

Also, as a good corporate citizen, the Group recognizes the importance of respecting human rights and will strive to respect the basic human rights of all stakeholders, including officers and employees.

  1. Compliance with laws, regulations, and norms concerning respect for human rights
    The Toyobo Group supports and respects international norms concerning human rights including the International Bill of Human Rights, which stipulates the basic human rights that should be enjoyed by everyone in the world, and the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work by the International Labour Organization (ILO) which stipulates the fundamental rights regarding labor (freedom of association and collective bargaining rights, the elimination of forced or compulsory labor, the abolition of child labor, and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation).

    Also, this policy was formulated in accordance with the UN’s Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

    The Group complies with the laws and regulations in every country and region in which it does business. Furthermore, in cases where internationally recognized human rights and the laws and regulations of a country or region are in conflict, we will pursue a course of action that has maximum respect for international human rights principles.
  2. Duty to respect human rights in all business activities
    The Toyobo Group will not infringe on the human rights of another individual, will minimize the adverse effects on human rights that might occur through its business activities, and will actively expand the practice of respect for human rights in its business activities.
  3. Practicing human rights due diligence
    The Toyobo Group recognizes the importance of practicing human rights due diligence to minimize any adverse effects of our business activities on human rights. Based on this recognition, we will build a human rights due diligence framework.

    Additionally, while this framework has yet to be designed, it will include identifying, preventing, and reducing actual and potential adverse effects on human rights in our business activities and value chains, integrating internal processes for measures related to the above, and publicizing our efforts.

  4. Correction and relief
    In cases where it is revealed that the Toyobo Group has had an adverse effect on human rights or furthered such an adverse effect, it will take appropriate steps to correct this and provide relief. Also, even in cases where the Group has not directly furthered an adverse effect on human rights, if a business partner of the Group or other related party has a direct connection to an adverse effect on human rights through their business, we will strive to cooperate with stakeholders to make improvements, and ensure that human rights are respected and not infringed upon.
  5. Cooperation and dialogue with stakeholders
    The Toyobo Group promotes respect for human rights through actions stipulated in its Charter, Code, and other policies and guidelines. Furthermore, we will respond to any actualized or potential adverse effects on human rights through dialogue and cooperation with the relevant stakeholders.
  6. Education for officers and employees
    The Toyobo Group will reflect this policy in the procedures required to ensure it is applied in all business activities and will provide appropriate education and training for officers and employees to ensure implementation based on a correct understanding of this policy.
  7. Information disclosure
    The Toyobo Group will report on various initiatives concerning respect for human rights based on this policy in a timely manner through its website and various reports.
  8. Selection of priority human rights issues
    As changes in society and other situations can change the specific human rights issues that should be addressed, the Toyobo Group will revise its priority issues through dialogue and cooperation with stakeholders and external experts.

Seiji Narahara
Representative Director, President and CEO, Co-COO
October 26, 2020

Related Policies


In April 2021, the Toyobo group established a group in charge of human rights in the Human Resources Department with the aim of actively and systematically working on "respect for human rights."

Director & Executive Officer overseeing the HR, Administration and Legal Division is responsible for human rights.

Targets and KPI


  • The Toyobo Group will carry out initiatives to ensure respect for basic human rights and diversity throughout the entire Group, including providing training to foster such respect among employees.
  • Through these initiatives, we will aim to be a fair company that is trusted by society.

<KPI and Results>

Initiatives KPI Target (FY2026) Results (FY2020)
  • Avoid human rights violations
  • Eliminate forced and child labor
  • Respond to human rights laws and regulations (Modern Slavery Act, etc.)
  • Ensure equality in recruitment and treatment of employees
  1. Implementation status of human rights education and training
  1. Once a year for 20% of non-consolidated employees
  1. 24.1%


Establishment of complaint handling and internal reporting systems

The Complaint Handling Committee and the compliance consultation centers within the internal reporting system provide consultations and handle reports regarding human rights. In order to ensure that employees can use these systems without concern, the name and other details of employees making reports or receiving consultations are kept private and we guarantee that these individuals will not be negatively affected by their action. We also strive to detect and solve human rights issues at an early stage through compliance surveys.

Respecting workers’ rights

● Respecting Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining Rights

The Toyobo Group respects freedom of association and collective bargaining rights based on its participation in the UN Global Compact.

We have set shared targets for labor and management to realize TOYOBO PVVs and we strive to build constructive and stable relationships between management and workers. We form labor unions through our Union Shop System* and employees who are eligible to join unions under the labor agreement between management and labor join the union for all employees. Our unions represent all their members and the results of negotiations between management and labor are applied to all members without conditions. Additionally, based on an agreement between management and labor, employees at management level or above are not eligible to join, and 78.09% of all employees are union members (as of FY2021).

  • * A system under which all employees at a workplace are required to join its union

● Dialogue Between Management and Labor

In order to realize TOYOBO PVVs, we carry out frank discussions between labor and management to build a foundation that will ensure motivation and job satisfaction for each individual employee. A Central Management Council is held between the labor union headquarters and the company once a year and Branch Management Council meetings are held once a year at each of eight branches across Japan. The union is represented by union leadership while the company is represented by the president at the Central Management Meeting and by controlling supervisors at Branch Management Meetings. These meetings are usually held face to face but due to the spread of new coronavirus insfections (COVID-19), in FY2021 they are being conducted through documents. At the meetings, discussions are held on themes such as the state of business, amendments to wage rises, and the state of working environments.

Respecting human rights in the supply chain

In October 2020, we reviewed the "CSR Procurement Guidelines". To achieve the SDGs in the supply chain, we will carry out a review that strengthens respect for human rights and environmental consciousness.

The guidelines clearly state that human rights matters (such as child labor, forced labor, and prohibiting discrimination against people of all attributes that include LGBT) should be taken into consideration selecting a business partner.

We conduct a survey among key business partners, based on the "CSR Procurement Guidelines". There are human rights items in the survey, and through these items, we can confirm the status of our business partners' efforts regarding human rights.

We ask new business partners at the start of business and ask existing partners regularly to cooperate with the survey.

Reducing excessive working hours

We are engaged in workstyle reform, so that our employees can work with renewed efficiency and achieve a good balance between work and personal life.

Enhancing diversity and equal opportunities

The Toyobo Group believes that personal and organizational growth is achieved through a process of mutual respect among our employees, with their differing work styles, careers, gender, nationality, race, and beliefs, and through cooperation to achieve our shared objectives. We respect different opinions and a wide range of values, and cooperate to achieve ambitious goals together.

Handling of Non-Compliance with Labor Standards

Unit Scope FY2017 FY2018 FY2019 FY2020 FY2021
Major violations of laws, regulations, or rules Incidents Global 0 0 0 0 0
Compliance-related incidents that resulted in a criminal complaint Incidents Total in Japan 0 0 0 0 0

Internal education initiatives

The Toyobo Group has created English and Chinese versions of the TOYOBO Group Charter of Corporate Behavior in order to implement internal education that enables employees around the world to share the same vision.

We also inform employees of rules and examples regarding respect for human rights, the prohibition of discrimination, the prohibition of child and forced labor, and the protection of personal information through the TOYOBO Group Compliance Manual.

Furthermore, we also hold seminars on respect for human rights alongside other initiatives to improve awareness of human rights among employees. In FY2020, we provided training for Group company employees concerning the human rights of overseas workers, and also instructed our various trading partners to do so as well.