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Human Rights

adidas recognises its corporate responsibility to respect human rights and the importance of showing that we are taking the necessary steps to fulfill this social obligation.

We do this by striving to operate responsibly along the entire value chain; by safeguarding the rights of our own employees and those of the workers who manufacture our products through our 'Workplace Standards'; and by applying our influence to affect change wherever human rights issues are linked to our business activities.

Since its inception in 1997, our human and labour rights programme has been built on the back of intense stakeholder outreach and engagement: seeking to understand and define the most salient issues to address as a company. Through those engagements we have identified the following as salient issues for our human rights programme and the focus for our human rights due diligence efforts: freedom of association and collective bargaining, working hours, health and safety, fair wages, child labour, forced labour, resource consumption, water (including chemical management), access to grievance mechanisms, diversity, mega sporting events, procurement, product safety, as well as data protection and privacy.

Recent highlights from our work include the publication of our approach to support human rights defenders, our participation in a pilot to create an international corporate human rights benchmark for business globally and our ongoing disclosure of cases received through our third party complaints mechanism, which is part of our long standing approach to transparency and accountability. Our work has been awarded with a leadership position in the KnowTheChain ranking in 2016, recognising our efforts to eradicate forced labour and human trafficking from our supply chains.

The following shows our internal policies and guidances that define our broad approach to managing human rights, explains our due diligence approach and third party grievance mechanisms as well as our ongoing commitment to gain insights and understanding of what matters to our stakeholders.



Given the scale and complexity of our value chain – with goods sourced from more than 55 countries globally and sold in over 100 markets – it is not practical to conduct human rights impact assessments continuously across all entities that are linked to our products or operations. We have therefore developed a due diligence approach that targets those high-risk locations, processes or activities that require the closest attention and where we are able to apply influence to mitigate or remediate issues, where they occur. We also seek to extend our reach by cascading responsibilities to our partners, to capture and address potential and actual human rights issues upstream and downstream of our product creation. Finally, to complement these processes, we have put in place dedicated third party grievance channels to tackle complaints.



For a summary of the complaint process, please click here:


> English version

> Spanish version

> Portuguese version

> Turkish version

> Chinese version

> Khmer version

> Thai Version

> Vietnamese version

> Indonesian version

> Japanese version



For the more detailed procedure, please click here:


> English version

> Spanish version

> Chinese version

> Khmer version

> Thai version

> Vietnamese version


In 2014, adidas established a third party complaints mechanism. As part of this mechanism, adidas committed, at the end of each year, to communicate, via its corporate website, how many third party complaints it has received related to labour or human rights violations and the status of those complaints (i.e. being investigated, successfully resolved, etc.).

The files below provide an overview and analysis of the third party complaints received each year since 2014, and brief summaries of the individual cases. The majority of these complaints have been received from trade unions and from labour and human rights advocacy groups. They are distinct from complaints received directly from workers through worker hotlines and other grievance channels operated in the countries where we source product.


UK Modern Slavery Act

The United Kingdom's Modern Slavery Act seeks to address the role of businesses in preventing slavery and human trafficking from occurring in their business operations and supply chains. adidas is confident in the steps we have taken to combat slavery and human trafficking, which are described in our Modern Slavery Act Transparency Statement and supporting documents.