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Our people plans

At Unilever, we have wide-ranging social commitments, announced in January 2021, designed to promote equality and inclusive economic growth. You can read more about our social commitments on on our Sustainability Hub.

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Supplier diversity and inclusion

As part of Unilever’s social commitments, we have committed to spending €2 billion annually with diverse businesses worldwide by 2025. We class businesses as diverse if they are at least 51% owned, managed and controlled by people from under-represented communities, including women, racial and ethnic groups, people with disabilities and LGBTQI+ communities.

To complement this commitment, we are investing in a new Supplier Development Programme to address the barriers that have held diverse partners back in the past. Through our programme, we will provide access to skills, financing and networking opportunities to build the capability of diverse groups running businesses now, and of diverse individuals who could be the entrepreneurs of the future.

We invite our existing and future partners to join us in driving this positive change together and increase their own spend with under-represented groups.

Together, these actions can unlock potential that has been marginalised for too long. Potential that will benefit our businesses and will contribute to stronger, fairer societies in the future.

Find out more about the impact we’re already making through our Supplier Diversity programme in North America.

Our global partners

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Unilever's Supplier Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Promise

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Through our Supplier Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Promise, we are offering our purpose-led partners an opportunity to join our efforts and demonstrate that addressing the social inequality in our value chains is of paramount importance to them.

This Promise, whilst optional, offers purpose-led partners an opportunity to position themselves on the leading edge of our supplier diversity commitment.

What are we asking our partners to do?

We are asking partners to share and, if needed, align their own supplier diversity programmes with ours so that, together, we can scale our successes. Ideally, this will include signing Unilever’s Supplier Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Promise and making use of Unilever’s guidance to establish a strategy, dedicate resources, engage and develop diverse suppliers, make use of advocacy opportunities and track progress.

Specifically, we ask all companies who sign to our promise to:

  • Create an enabling environment with inclusive policies, and with leaders educated and empowered to role-model inclusive behaviour
  • Set and communicate goals to achieve organisational diversity and gender equity; demonstrable throughout senior leadership and their Unilever account teams
  • Develop a transparent supplier diversity strategy and advocacy network which links to their broader company objectives and allows them to track progress against their strategic commitments
  • Grow diverse spend through inclusive procurement policies and practices designed to create social equity
  • Engage to allow future reporting of Unilever’s tier-2 diverse spend i.e., the proportion of our partners’ spend with suppliers - attributable to your business with Unilever - who meet the diverse business definition
  • Maintain an open dialogue to share best practices and opportunities for collaboration with their customer and suppliers

Living Wage: Working together to drive systemic change

Consumers expect Unilever, our brands and our partners to step up. So we are. Unilever already pays all our direct employees at or above a living wage. The next step is to widen this commitment to those in our supply chain who directly provide goods or services to Unilever, so we have committed to ensuring everyone who directly provides goods and services to Unilever will earn at least a living wage or a living income by 2030.

We believe our commitment will positively impact millions of people and their dependents.

Together with our partners, other businesses, governments and NGOs, we are looking at purchasing practices, collaboration and advocacy to create systemic change and ensure the rights of everyone to an adequate standard of living.

We believe a systemic approach is paramount, as the issue of wages can not be addressed without also looking at working hours, health and safety or discrimination. That’s why we continue to work hard to address other human rights issues, including labour rights, in our global value chain.

Unilever’s Living Wage Promise

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Unilever, along with our partner organisations, such as the IDH The Sustainable Trade Initiative and Oxfam, aims to break the cycle of poverty and strengthen the foundations of the global economy. Through our Living Wage/ Living Income Promise, we are offering purpose-led partners an opportunity to join our efforts and resolve to pay at least a living wage to all workers in their own business operations, with the ultimate goal of improving lives and livelihoods and strengthening business resilience.

This Promise, whilst optional, offers purpose-led partners an opportunity to position themselves on the leading edge of our Living Wage/Living Income commitment and to demonstrate that addressing the social inequality in our value chains is of paramount importance to them.

What are we asking our partners to do?

We are asking all companies who sign our promise to:

  • Commit to paying at least a living wage to every worker in their own operations and consider making this commitment public
  • Advocate for living wages in any industry groups in which they play a role, regionally as well as globally.
  • Evaluate existing living wage gaps in their own organisations
  • Identify strategies and plans to address any gaps, using learning materials offered by Unilever and other independent living wage experts
  • Constructively engage with workers and their representatives to identify ways to close any living wage gaps
  • Transparently report on progress towards achieving a living wage. We recommend reporting progress for any commitment you have made publicly.

87 partners have already signed the Promises

Here are some of them:

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Our planet plans

We're collaborating with our partners to halt climate change, by protecting and regenerating nature and becoming a net zero carbon supply chain.

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