Target: Human Rights Committee

Whereas, the risks to our company of complicity in Human Rights violations are significant, and as one of the largest retailers in the world, we have significant leverage for addressing and effecting Human Rights compliance throughout the industry;

Whereas, Target acknowledges, as a founding member of both the Sustainable Apparel Coalition and the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety, addressing human rights issues in its international supply chain is a “business imperative and opportunity”[1] requiring leadership, resources, and funding;

Whereas, Bangladesh represents only a very small fraction of our company’s suppliers as we source products from more than 3,500 registered factories in more than 50 countries;

Whereas, although part of a multi-corporation $20 million settlement for sweatshop conditions in Saipan in the early 2000’s, Target’s supply chain continues to be implicated human rights abuses[2] including allegations of forced confinement of workers, mandatory pregnancy testing, and violations of freedom of association in El Salvador, and many specific factory violations in China[3];

Whereas, since 2011 Target has been featured in two high profile reports and media campaigns alleging factory worker beatings, death threats, and sexual abuse of young women in supply chains in Bangladesh[4] and Jordan[5];

Whereas, since our company began reporting on workplace conditions and human rights in 2010, reports have included increasing instances of violations of wage, safety, and health issues[6];

Whereas, in 2012 conditions at more than 40% of our supplier factories were found to be not acceptable in those reports, and critical human rights violations were uncovered in almost 20% of inspected factories[7];

 

Whereas, in China alone in 2012, working conditions in 50% of suppliers were found not acceptable and 65% of our suppliers were found engaging in wage violations[8];

Whereas, our Company acknowledges the salient risks of ongoing unauthorized subcontracting, or other methods of suppliers cheating audit inspections[9];

Whereas, while we have an entire subsidiary company, Target Sourcing Services, employing more than 1200 people working with our supply chain, our Board of Directors has no explicit charge for oversight of the many Human Rights issues facing the company; be it therefore

Resolved: Shareholders request that the Board of Directors expressly delineate responsibilities of a board committee to address oversight of human rights issues, either by delegating those responsibilities explicitly to the Corporate Responsibility Committee (CRC), or establishing a separate board committee on human rights.

Supporting Statement

As described above, our company has ongoing problems with human and labor rights and has been unable to reasonably limit social injury resulting from our company’s business operations.  Taking the actions requested will help to ensure that directors fulfill their fiduciary duty to protect the human and labor rights of all the company’s stakeholders.