Respecting Human Rights
Basic policies regarding human rights
The Kubota Group supports the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, respects the human rights of all people, and does not discriminate or violate human rights on the basis of nationality, race, age or gender (gender identity or sexual orientation), or for any other reason.
The Kubota Group does not permit forced labor or child labor, and also requests that its business partners comply in this regard. These policies are declared in the KUBOTA Group Charter for Action & Code of Conduct and put into practice.
Human rights advancement system
Kubota has a Human Rights Advancement Planning & Coordination Committee headed by the director in charge of CSR Planning & Coordination Headquarters. Its members at each Kubota site are promoting activities based on the human rights advancement activity policies. At the beginning of each fiscal year, a meeting is held gathering the committee members of all sites.
Besides the committee members, a human rights advancement leader is appointed at each site, who leads the human rights advancement activities of the site.
Human rights education
Aiming to create a harassment-free, worker-friendly workplace environment, Kubota plans and provides human rights education programs for all employees, including President and Directors, every year, based on the human rights advancement activity policies. It is now possible to receive human rights education from overseas via a video conference system.
The education programs include rank-based training, such as training for new employees, and human rights education provided at each site. Employees who are unable to receive such programs can receive education via a video conference system, or study by themselves using DVDs, textbooks, and FAQs.
In FY2017, all Kubota employees (in terms of the total number of participants) in Japan received human rights education through internal training or training offered by external organizations.
[Results of internal training in 2017]
|Internal training||External training||Total|
|Kubota||12,913 people||350 people||13,263 people|
|Group companies in Japan||8,885 people||125 people||9,010 people|
Major internal education programs
|Training for directors and managers||174 people (including presidents, etc. of Group companies in Japan)|
|Training for new employees||801 people (including those from Group companies in Japan)|
|Training for newly appointed foremen||21 people|
|Training for newly appointed supervisors||29 people|
|Seminar for harassment consultation office personnel||108 people (including those from Group companies in Japan, etc.)|
|Fieldwork training for human rights leaders||31 people (including those from Group companies in Japan, etc.)|
|Training for expatriates||21 people|
- The figures include temporary and re-hired employees.
- Education programs are held at each Group company in Japan.
- For the hearing impaired, DVD transcripts (or a DVD with subtitles) or lecture texts are provided in advance, so that they can receive training with other participants in the same room.
- Major education themes
- Prevention of harassment
(Sexual harassment, maternity harassment(*1), power harassment, or harassment against sexual minorities (LGBT, etc.)(*2), etc.)
- Anti-Dowa discrimination (Act to Advance the Elimination of Discrimination against Buraku, etc.)
- Issues facing the disabled (Act to Advance the Elimination of Discrimination against the Disabled, the disabled employment ratio, etc.)
- Issues facing foreign residents in Japan (hate speech, etc.)
- UK Modern Slavery Act
- Color vision variation
- Results of the awareness survey on harassment
- Revision of the employment regulations, etc. associated with the revision of the Equal Employment Opportunities Act and the Child Care and Family Care Leave Act
- Prevention of harassment
- 1 Harassment relating to pregnancy, childbirth, childcare leave, etc.
- 2 Acronym of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender
- Major external trainings
- Kubota also encourages its employees to proactively participate in seminars hosted by corporate organizations addressing human right issues and government organs.
“Dowa and human rights issue awareness-raising seminar” (for management-level employees) hosted by the Corporate Federation for Dowa and Human Rights Issues: 11 participants
“Dowa and human rights issue awareness-raising introductory seminar” hosted by the Sakai City Human Rights Education Promotion Council: 79 participants
“The 38th Human Rights and Dowa Issue Corporate Awareness-Raising Seminar” hosted by the Executive Committee(*3): 49 participants (including those from Group companies in Japan)
“The 48th Buraku Liberation and Human Rights Summer Seminar” hosted by the Executive Committee(*3): 19 participants (including those from Group companies in Japan), etc.
- 3 Hosted by Osaka Prefecture, Osaka City, Buraku Liberation and Human Rights Research Institute, etc.
Human rights training concerning LGBT-related issues for directors and managers (Feb. 17, 2017)
(Lecturer: Ms. Maki Muraki, Representative of Nijiiro Diversity)
Human rights education targeting all employees at Kubota Kyuhoji Business Center (Dec. 4, 2017)
(Lecturer: Mr. Hiroyuki Ikenaga, General Manager of the Human Rights Advancement Department, CSR Planning & Coordination Headquarters)
Consultation office system
As remedial action for victims of human rights violation, Kubota established the Kubota Hotline a whistleblowing system that includes the use of outside lawyers and consultation office systems at each of its bases, including those overseas, thereby enabling it to respond swiftly to any issues that may arise.
Number of cases reported on human rights issues (including harassment) in 2017: 21
Seminar for harassment consultation office personnel (July 5, 2017)
(Lecturer: Keiko Miki, President of Atorie M)
[Whistleblowing System (Kubota Hotline)]
We distribute pocket cards with contact details and introduce such offices through the Company intranet, posters, email magazines, human rights seminars, and so on.
[Consultation office system in Japan]
Each year, Kubota holds a seminar for harassment consultation office personnel inviting external lecturers, with the aim of improving their counseling ability and preventing secondary victimization. A total of 108 employees, including those who participated via a video conference system, took part in this seminar in 2017.
The seminar focused on enabling the participants to take prompt and appropriate action against any harassment, such as sexual, power, or maternity harassment, or harassment against sexual minorities, without causing any disadvantage to the informant.
Activities to raise human rights awareness
In order to enhance awareness of human rights, Kubota invites human rights-related slogans from all Japan-based employees, including those from Group companies in Japan, every year, and awards excellent slogans during Human Rights Week, which is celebrated every December.
In 2017, entries were received from a total of 16,666 applicants (an application rate of 85.0%) and the best slogan from each business site was posted on a long strip of paper. Starting from 2016, the awarded slogans have also been posted at distributors.
Activities unique to each site were also conducted. In 2017, the Kubota Head Office hosted various events, including displays of human rights-related slogans and panels, an event to experience walking and communicating with guide dogs, sales of vegetables by Kubota Sun-Vege Farm Co., Ltd., a special subsidiary of Kubota, and sales of cookies and bread by a vocational training center for the disabled.
Events hosted by Kubota Head Office Pre-Human Rights Week seminar (November 29, 2017)
Human Rights Week banner
Display of human rights-related slogans
Awarding the winner of the human rights slogan contest
(Group company in Japan)
Experiencing walking a guide dog
(Cooperation: Nippon Lighthouse Guide Dog Training Center)
Protection of privacy
From the perspective of respecting human rights and protecting privacy, Kubota conducts several inspections each year for each base to ensure there are no insufficiencies in investigation tasks such as credit surveys, and there are no problematic contents or descriptions from the perspective of human rights violation included in the investigation reports.
Developing human rights leaders
Kubota appoints human rights leaders and holds a human rights leaders’ meeting every year, at which leaders explain their human rights advancement policies, give presentations on human rights advancement activities, and discuss the contents of human rights education.
Fieldwork training is also conducted twice a year (once in the eastern Japan area and once in the western Japan area). The participants learn about the local situation of the area by listening to lectures by external lecturers or persons actually involved in the lecture topic, and by walking around the local area.
In 2017, participants in the fieldwork for the eastern Japan area learned in Tokyo about the anti-Dowa discrimination and the issues facing foreign residents in Japan, while the participants in the western Japan area learned in Kyoto City about the issue of anti-Dowa discrimination.
Eastern Japan area: Fieldwork training in Tokyo (March 9, 2017)
Themes: South and North Korean people (“The Great Kanto Earthquake” (Arakawa River banks)) Anti-Dowa discrimination (“History of leather industry” (Kinegawa district)) Participants: 13
Western Japan area: Fieldwork training in Kyoto City (March 15, 2017)
Themes: Anti-Dowa discrimination (visited Biwako Sosui, Okazaki Public Hall, Okuni Monument of Shijogawara, Sakurada Gihee Monument, The Bank of Yanagihara Memorial Museum, etc.) Participants: 18
Respecting human rights throughout the supply chain
Kubota declares in the Kubota Group Charter for Action, “we do not permit forced labor or child labor, and also request that our business partners to comply in this regard.”
Also in its CSR Procurement Guidelines, Kubota declares that it does not permit forced labor or child labor, and also requests that its suppliers comply in this regard. The Guidelines also clearly prohibit the use of conflict minerals(*), which are a source of funds for armed insurgents.
In May 2017, the Kubota Group released its Group statement with regard to the UK Modern Slavery Act, which is also presented on its website.
For employees in Japan, explanation was provided during their human rights education programs. At overseas Group companies, the business site heads of each company provided explanation to the employees.
- Tantalum, tin, tungsten and gold and their derivatives, produced in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and its neighboring countries, which constitute a source of funds for armed insurgents, who have repeatedly committed inhumane acts in these countries.
Awareness survey on harassment
An awareness survey on harassment is conducted collaboratively by the labor union and the Human Rights Advancement Department, targeting Kubota employees. The results of the survey are released through the Company intranet and on the newsletter distributed to union members. Details are explained in human rights education programs, etc.
External related organizations
Kubota participates in the external organizations below and is working to create a discrimination-free society.
- The Corporate Federation for Dowa and Human Rights Issues, Osaka (also participating in Shiga, Wakayama, Hyogo, Chiba and Hiroshima)
- Osaka City Corporate Human Right Promotion Council (with related organizations in each municipality)
- The Center for Fair Recruitment and Human Rights Advancement
- Multi-Ethnic Human Rights Education Center for Pro-existence
- Osaka Career Support & Talent Enhancement Plaza
- Buraku Liberation and Human Rights Research Institute, etc.