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2022 Sustainability Report
published 2023/08/01

VAUDE says NO to forced labor

VAUDE's position on the issue of forced labor is a clear No. We have already achieved much with our commitment to the issue.

All of our producers commit themselves to a "Saying "No" to forced labor in their production sites. The obligation is as follows:

“Forced labor and bonded labor must be forbidden. Employers may not retain original documents, wages or bonuses of the workers. In addition, the workers must be guaranteed the right to terminate the employment relationship in compliance with the statutory period of notice. Overtime shall be voluntary.“

According to the OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Supply Chains in the Garment and Footwear Sector, forced labor is a sector risk. We have identified the following risks in our supply chain:

  • Workers are not aware that overtime should be voluntary.
    What are we doing about it? We regularly organize trainings to inform employees about their rights. Additionally, audits are an important tool to monitor human rights compliance. To reduce this risk, we also focus on establishing a functional internal grievance mechanism, complemented by an external complaints mechanism.

  • Rejection of resignation letters.
    What are we doing about it? We are engaging in dialogue with the producers and raising awareness about properly establishing the resignation process. We then verify compliance through regular visits and audits.

  • Forced labor in China.
    What are we doing about it? Fair Wear has conducted audits on all our production facilities, and no form of forced labor has been found. Regarding the risks in cotton cultivation, we have identified no risks in our supply chain as we rely on GOTS or OCS certification when using cotton in our products.

  • Organic Cotton without Forced Labor
    You can find more information on this issue here:
    All the risks listed here are potential risks that we have identified in our production countries and that have an increased likelihood of occurrence. (See also Risk Overview)

Monitoring by independent auditors

An obligation in and of itself is not enough, of course. Therefore, all our producers are regularly monitored by independent auditors such as those from Fair Wear. This process involved carefully examining whether there were any cases of forced labor. This is verified through interviews inside and outside the production site.

  • How are workers recruited?
  • Is overtime voluntary?
  • Are the employees required to pay a depositor give their identity papers in order to commence employment?
  • Are wages paid on time? Are there cases of outstanding wage payments?
  • Are employees allowed to move around freely (breaks, leaving the factory, using the toilet)?

Results of the Fair Wear Audits

The Fair Wear audits show that there were no complaints for this issue in 2022.

GRI:   409-1
Operations and suppliers at significant risk for incidents of forced or compulsory labor
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