Human rights

​Fortum supports and respects internationally recognised human rights, which are included in the key human rights agreements. Our own operations have a direct or indirect impact on the realisation of the human rights of our own personnel, those working in the supply chain, and members of local communities.

Management of human rights issues

Our goal is to operate in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and to apply these principles in our own operations as well as in country and partner risk assessments and supplier audits. Fortum’s approach to the management of human rights issues is described in more detail in the Social responsibility: Human rights. 

Fortum’s Corporate Sustainability unit is responsible for coordinating and developing sustainability, including human rights issues, at the Group level.

Personnel training in human rights issues in 2015

Fortum employees conducting supplier audits receive 1.5 days of internal training, during which they review the requirements of the Supplier Code of Conduct, the sub-areas to be audited, and the tools to be used to verify compliance with the requirements. In 2015 we trained a total of three auditors from Finland and India. Those who have completed the internal training are advised to complete auditor training also on the Social Accountability (SA8000) standard.
The online course for Fortum’s Code of Conduct also includes training in human rights-related issues. The Code of Conduct was updated in 2015 and employees completed an online course with exercises related to everyday Code of Conduct situations. The online course is also part of the induction programme for new employees.
In 2015 we participated in the Finnish Corporate Responsibility Network’s (FIBS) training related to business and human rights.

Assessment of human rights impacts in 2015

A sustainability assessment is carried out for all of our investment projects and takes into consideration the environmental, occupational health and safety, and social impacts of the project. The sustainability assessment includes a human rights evaluation, especially in new operating areas. A human rights assessment is also part of the systematic assessment of country and counterparty risks when planning a project.
The process has two parts: a light and a deep assessment. A light assessment is done for all new countries in where our business unit is planning the sales of operation or maintenance services, for example, and it is based on publically available sources. In 2015, seven of these assessments were made. A deep assessment was done for one country.
Fortum’s supplier audits cover the most important human rights aspects related to purchases. Our personnel conduct the supplier audits. By conducting the audits on our own, we gain a better idea of the supplier’s practices and, at the same time, increase the supplier’s competence related to human rights.
In 2016 we will assess the possibility to increase the number of supplier audits by collaborating with an external service provider in conducting audits.
The supplier audits conducted in 2015 and their results are described in more detail in the section Sustainable supply chain.

Identified impacts on human rights, corrective measures and grievances in 2015

All forms of child and forced labour are strictly prohibited and in violation of Fortum’s Code of Conduct. Of our operating countries, India has not ratified the International Labour Organisation’s (ILO) Convention on the minimum age and the worst forms of child labour. Our functions in India require job applicants to be of adult age. We have not identified risks related to the use of forced labour in our own operations. Support of employees’ right to freedom of association and collective bargaining are discussed in the section Employee-employer relations.
During the year there was one grievance filed regarding discrimination, which is reported in the section Diversity and equal opportunity. There were no other grievances related to human rights or labour rights filed through formal grievance channels, nor were there any grievances carried over from the previous year.

                                                                                                                                                                                               Photo: Lehtikuva