In 2020, adidas handled 22 complaints using its third-party complaint mechanism. Of these, 16 were new, while six were carried over from the previous year. The company resolved ten cases during the year with 12 ongoing. 54% of complaints raised were done so by local NGOs or Trade Unions, while 23% were made by an International NGO or trade union, and 23% made by a Joint Local and international NGO or union. No complaints were raised by individuals.
adidas’ shares some information about the cases raised (see page 6), including the outcome of a complaint raised by a worker in India in 2018 regarding harassment and abuse at a footwear supplier. In response to this adidas:
- Commissioned an independent third party to conduct off-site investigative interviews which confirmed a range of harassment related issues primarily targeted at women workers.
- In a 2020 review survey, over 7,500 women workers were surveyed where the majority (81,4%) believed their wages to be “fair” or “very fair”, while only 1.3% stated it was “unfair”. Most of the women (62,6%) also indicated that they were rewarded for good performance.
- Worked with the supplier through a series of advisory sessions focusing on:
- Policy review
- Training and awareness raising for all workers
- Regular monitoring with senior management
- Enhancing worker-management communication channels (including the development of a gender responsive non-judicial grievance channel)
- Recommending a review of the factory’s management systems.
- A series of workshops were conducted by the expert third party involving workers and management enabling them to raise concerns without fear of retribution, including enhancing effective functioning of an existing internal committee for harassment and abuse. The 2020 survey mentioned above also indicated that three quarters of the women respondents confirmed they have not experienced or witnessed any harassment or abuse in their factories.
- Worker interviews have since confirmed no new cases.
- Following this, the management also put programs in place to increase the percentage of women in supervisory/leadership positions.