Fair living wage

Fair Living Wage

We want suppliers to offer their employees good working conditions, including fair living wages.* To us, this is indisputable and has led to the development of our global Fair Living Wage Strategy.

We believe that wage development in production countries, which is often driven by governments, is taking too long. The H&M group wants to take further action and encourage the whole industry to follow. With size comes responsibility and we have the ability to contribute to a positive change.

Creating systemic change

We want to help ensure fair living wages across the industry and in all of our sourcing markets. This requires a huge amount of collaboration between stakeholders such as governments, suppliers, brands and trade unions. For solutions to work, they must connect relevant stakeholders at the right time and in the right way.  

According to the UN-body ILO and global trade unions, there is no universal benchmark on how to calculate a living wage. Instead they stress the importance of promoting freedom of association and collective bargaining as necessary for workers and employers to negotiate wages and working conditions. We share this view and that is why we in our strategy focus on improved workplace dialogue and industrial relations.

We are aware of that the opportunities for employees to negotiate are limited in many countries. That is why we are involved in projects and programs with the aim of strengthening employees’ rights and their ability to negotiate on their own behalf on their terms and conditions through trade unions or other elected employee representatives. We run workplace dialogue and industrial relations projects in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India and Ethiopia and Myanmar.

At 2018, the goal is to have democratically-elected worker representatives and improved wage management systems in place at suppliers representing 50 percent of our product volume.

Reporting results

The H&M group transparently reports on our efforts towards achieving a fair living wage in our annual sustainability report.

*Our definition of a fair living wage is a wage which satisfies the basic needs of employees and their families and provides some discretionary income such as savings. It should be revised annually, and negotiated with democratically elected worker representatives

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