Report reveals Canadian companies lag behind global peers in disclosure of decent work metrics

By October 6, 2016Press Release

Canadian Tire, Metro, Loblaw, Empire and Alimentation Couche-Tard among retailers highlighted in case study

Toronto, Ont., October 6, 2016 – Institutional investors have a financial and reputational interest in improving the quality of work at retail companies in their portfolios, says a new report released today by SHARE (Shareholder Association for Research and Education).

Released in the lead up to the World Day for Decent Work, SHARE’s report highlights the risks faced by many Canadian retail workers of precarious employment and sheds light on the lack of transparency by companies of their workplace policies and practices.

“Poor employment practices do not exist exclusively in the supply chains of major consumer product retailers – they are also a common feature of workplaces across Canada,” says SHARE’s Director of Responsible Investment, Shannon Rohan, who authored the report. “If investors are to manage these risks, they require clear, comparable information on company practices.”

The report finds that Canadian retail companies lag behind their global peers in the disclosure of key workplace metrics, including their approaches to remuneration and wages, their strategies for achieving workforce stability and their efforts in measuring and understanding how their workers are impacting business performance and contributing value.

Based on these findings, the report identifies the important role investors can play in seeking improved corporate disclosure of this information through engagement with retail companies in their portfolios.

“Investors recognize that information on how companies value their workers provides important insight into corporate management and its priorities,” says Peter Chapman, SHARE’s Executive Director. “Better disclosure is the starting point for investors to be able to identify those companies that are genuinely committed to decent work practices,” he added.

The report, “Valuing Decent Work: How do retail companies measure up?” outlines the qualities of a corporate decent work strategy and invites stakeholders to work with SHARE to identify effective investor-led strategies for achieving decent work outcomes in Canada.

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The complete report is available for download here.

About SHARE (Shareholder Association for Research & Education)
SHARE is a Canadian leader in responsible investment services, research and education for institutional investors. Since its creation as a non-profit organization in 2000, SHARE has provided proxy voting analysis, shareholder engagement, education, policy advocacy, and practical research on issues related to responsible investment. SHARE’s clients include pension funds, mutual funds, foundations, faith-based organizations and asset managers across Canada.

SHARE is a signatory to the U.N. Principles for Responsible Investment (UN PRI).
www.share.ca / @share_ca

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For more information please contact: 

Norah Murphy, Communications Coordinator, SHARE
Telephone: (604) 695-2026
[email protected]