Our Director of Corporate Social Responsibility, Tony Khaw, represented NXP at
the annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights in late 2020. It was the
third consecutive year that NXP was invited to participate at the forum,
underlining our role when it comes to responsibly combining business with
respect for human rights.
It’s a subject near and dear to NXP CEO and President Kurt Sievers, so we
talked to him and Tony about the topic.
NXP: Let’s start by asking Kurt why you feel so passionate about human rights?
Kurt Sievers: NXP is all about coming up with technology and
solutions that solve problems for people. We want to enhance the quality of
life for everyone, and that means conducting business in such a way that
guarantees human dignity and respects human rights. To do otherwise would
violate the spirit of NXP.
NXP: Okay, let’s zoom out now and look at NXP efforts to guarantee human rights. Tony?
Tony Khaw: NXP has been on a human rights due diligence
journey for the past eight years. This has focused on building the capability
to identify our greatest human rights risks when it comes to recruiting,
hiring and managing the employment of foreign migrant workers in our
operations and supply chain.
KS: We have been investing in this now for years because it
is so important to us. And it’s great to see the efforts of people like Tony
and others getting acknowledged by objective, external parties. One of the
biggest thrills for me was when we received the Thomson Reuters Foundation’s Stop Slavery Award
in 2016. It was a great validation of our work to date and also an incentive
for us to continue our efforts.
NXP: Identifying potential human rights violations is one thing, but what are we doing to stop them?
TK: It’s important to recognize the importance of human
rights due diligence to identify the risks, but we must never lose sight of
the third pillar of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights,
which is "Access to Remedy." So, we've done a lot of work to engage with
workers and give them access to remedies by providing them information on how
to report human rights violations or any other work-related issues. NXP
recognizes the importance of workers' voices. I think that a workforce that is
respected and has a voice will help businesses weather a crisis such as the
KS: One of the things I found particularly moving is the
difference we continue to make in the lives of migrant workers. There is a
wonderful documentary about it that I urge everyone to watch. It’s a great
source of personal pride for me and I hope it touches others in the same way.
NXP: Tony, part of your participation in the un forum focused on covid-19 and how we are dealing with it, particularly in relation to our human rights efforts. What has the impact been?
TK: The pandemic has posed a serious challenge to how
businesses like NXP conduct their due diligence activities and specifically on
efforts to engage with those vulnerable workers where worker interviews are an
integral part of our due diligence assessments. We've put in place new methods
to continue our efforts during the pandemic. These entail conducting pulse
surveys of our high priority suppliers to understand how the pandemic has
affected their business and operations, and how their workers are impacted.
This is followed up by phone calls to confirm the survey results and, more
recently, by conducting remote audits to further assess the effects.
NXP: What other measures have been taken?
TK: We’ve been listening carefully to our employees, which
has enabled workers to notify us of any problems caused by the pandemic.
NXP: What's next?
TK: We're continuing to monitor conditions and engage with
the communities in which we operate or upon which we rely, so that we can stay
agile and respond to conditions as they develop. We are also looking to learn
lessons from how our human rights due diligence processes function during
these difficult times, so we can make them even more resilient going forward.
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NXP: Anything you’d like to add in conclusion?
KS: Firstly, I want to say a big thank you to Tony and his
colleagues for doing such great work for NXP and society. Their efforts are so
important because, as I like to say we are on a journey to address and help
improve the economic, social and environmental challenges all of us face. The
honor of being included in the UN's annual event on business and human rights
recognizes our efforts. It should be a challenge to all of us to keep up the
good and important work because we are changing the world together!
to read an article on the Annual UN Forum on Business and Human Rights.
You can watch a short video about the 2019 Forum by clicking
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