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Human rights

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Every individual has a right to be treated with dignity, without discrimination. Geopolitical tensions, climate change, and increasing inequality further emphasise the importance of human rights. When growing and harvesting trees, producing products or transporting materials, Stora Enso has an impact on people. We directly impact approximately 19,000 forest owners, 21,000 employees, over 20,000 suppliers and thousands of customers globally. Our commitment to respect human rights covers all our operations, including our employees, contractors, suppliers, and neighbouring communities.

While we respect and consider all human rights important, the following most salient human rights topics remain the primary focus of our work. Please visit our Human Rights Guidelines to learn more. 

  • Health and safety
  • Fair labour (freedom from forced labour, freedom of association, non-discrimination and non-harassment)
  • Land and natural resource rights acquisition and management
  • Acquisition and management of land and natural resource rights
  • Children’s rights

How we work

Our approach to human rights is informed by the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights which emphasise that companies have an ongoing responsibility to respect human rights, even where government actions and regulatory frameworks are inadequate. We take human rights into account across our operations starting from the investment decisions, paying special attention to vulnerable groups, and encouraging our partners to do the same.

Our human rights due diligence procedures include:

 Investment guidelines

  • Environmental and social due diligence for mergers and acquisitions
  • Environmental and Social Impact Assessments (ESIAs)
  • Community consultations, including Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC)
  • Sustainability Assessment checklist for innovation projects 

Value chain transparency

Improving value chain transparency is a key component of due diligence. Stora Enso has been a member of the Supplier Ethical Data Exchange (Sedex), since 2011, a platform where companies share unit-specific sustainability information with customers. Sedex Member Ethical Data Audits (SMETA) are conducted regularly, assessing suppliers’ performance against applicable labour standards, as well as health and safety, environmental, and business ethics criteria.

Furthermore, we are a member of EcoVadis, a platform where companies’ supplier performance is assessed and shared with customers. In 2023, Stora Enso was awarded the highest ‘Platinum’ level by EcoVadis for the seventh consecutive year. We also take part in membership organisations such as the Global Business Initiativefor Human Rights (GBI), the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), and the Enact Human Rights & Business Practice Group (HRBPG) for access to expert knowledge and peer learning.

Policies and guidelines guiding our human rights work

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