Social sustainability is a crucial element in the workplace as well as outside work. It is a proactive way of managing and identifying business impacts on employees, workers in the value chain, customers, and local communities. It must be a critical part of any business as it affects the quality of a business’ relationships with its employees and stakeholders. Moreover, it mitigates business risk as poor social sustainability poses a risk to both brand and product quality.
The core principles of social sustainability are human rights, fair labour practices, living conditions, health and safety, empowerment, community engagement and skilling of the youth.
The first six of the UN Global Compact's principles focus on the social dimension of corporate sustainability, of which human rights is the cornerstone. Our work on social sustainability is focused on specific groups: women's empowerment and gender equality; decent work; quality education; and children’s rights.