In collaboration with our supplier partners around the world, we work to ensure that our supply chain complies with the highest standards for ethical sourcing, responsible labor practices, and environmental stewardship. Together, we’re committed to a program that continually assesses and reduces risk, fosters ongoing improvement, and is respectful of human rights and the environment.
At Corning, we pledge to uphold the highest standards for fundamental human rights and view them as a key component of a socially responsible supply chain. We closely monitor supply chain activity and collaborate with our supplier partners to promote fair, safe, and healthy working environments. See our Human Rights Policy.
Within our supply chain, we proactively identify, monitor, train, and engage with suppliers on human rights, beginning with our strategic sourcing process. During the supplier selection and onboarding process, we request sustainability and human rights related information from prospective suppliers and score them based on their responses. Additional third-party, sustainability related certificates are also gathered during the onboarding process to bolster our supply agreements with prospective suppliers. If Corning assess that a prospective supplier does not meet our requirements related to labor and human rights.
During the selection process, we encourage diverse suppliers to participate in our contracting and procurement process. One way we incentivize this is by waiving supplier onboarding fees for diverse suppliers that we onboard.
Once onboarded, we continue to use sustainability and human rights as key criteria to track and monitor supplier performance and determine whether direct engagement, including on-site audits, may be needed to validate conformance with our standards and expectations. Directly engaging and working with suppliers, especially priority suppliers that we identify as higher risk, enables us to determine whether they are meeting the expectations outlined in our Supplier Code of Conduct, from verifying suppliers’ nonconformance or performance on specific topics, such as forced labor, child labor, freedom of association, health and safety, working hours, wages, and non-discrimination, to ensuring they are implementing socially responsible businesses practices, such as verifying the age of their workers, ensuring recruitment fees are not being paid by workers, and preventing instances of retaining workers’ personal documents that may restrict their freedom of movement. We use highly experienced, third-party Responsible Business Alliance (RBA)-approved monitoring organizations, such as Intertek, to independently monitor, audit, and investigate actual and potential nonconformances. Audits typically include direct interviews with a sample size of workers, which is based on the Responsible Business Alliance’s recommended standard, calculated as the square root of the total number of workers (e.g., minimum 30 workers must be interviewed for a 900-person workforce) and must be no fewer than 20 workers in all instances. Key documents, such as wage slips, overtime documents, health and safety documents, and social security allowance documents, are also thoroughly reviewed to understand and verify conformance to our standards. Based on audit results, corrective action plans are developed and additional follow-ups with suppliers are scheduled. In the event we determine remediation to be insufficient, we may terminate our contract with the supplier.
In addition, we regularly hold training summits to present our approach and criteria for sustainability and human rights to all identified suppliers, including recruitment and labor agencies, and discuss the overall outcomes of our various audits and due diligence efforts. Recent trends, best practices, strategies, and tactics to improve practices and mitigate sustainability and human rights risks are also shared to help our suppliers improve their human rights performance and ensure alignment with our values and expectations. Supplier training summits are an example of how we engage with our suppliers on sustainability and human rights related topics and are part of a broader, continuous improvement-based system that enables us to evaluate whether our actions have been effective or if we have opportunities to improve existing policies and practices. Finally, to mitigate adverse human rights impacts on workers in the supply chain, we implement several responsible purchasing practices, including paying first-tier suppliers, particularly small, disadvantaged suppliers, within 60 days and minimizing changes in orders once they are placed.
For more on how we assess, monitor, and improve supplier performance on sustainability and human rights, see our Supply Chain Social Responsibility - Accountability page.
Responsible Materials Sourcing
At Corning, corporate social responsibility is a proactive commitment to preserving the trust of our stakeholders. This commitment contributes to sustainable economic and environmental development through all our business activities – how we operate, what we sell, how we give, and how we support our people, the communities in which we operate, and society at large.
As part of our corporate social responsibility, Corning is committed to the responsible sourcing of minerals – sourcing done in an ethical and sustainable manner that safeguards the human rights of everyone in our global supply chain. Any connection between the materials used in Corning products and armed violence or human rights abuses is unacceptable. We also require our suppliers to extend these expectations to their own suppliers. Suppliers are required to include provisions equivalent to Corning’s Supplier Code of Conduct, which include a commitment to responsible minerals sourcing and prohibition of forced labor, in their supply chain agreements and to flowdown the same requirements throughout their supply chains. See our (link to Supplier Code of Conduct).
In 2012, in compliance with Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Corning adopted a policy and due diligence framework to ensure that the tantalum, tin, tungsten and gold (also known as 3TG or “conflict minerals”) in our supply chains do not directly or indirectly finance or benefit armed groups in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) or adjoining countries. As part of our diligence framework, we have included a conflict minerals clause in our purchase order terms and conditions and relevant contract templates in order to communicate to our suppliers our expectations and requirements regarding the sourcing and disclosure of conflict minerals. See our Responsible Minerals Policy (link to policy)
In 2020, in recognition of growing concerns about child labor and additional human rights violations beyond the scope of Dodd-Frank, Corning broadened its vigilance beyond conflict minerals to a wider range of minerals and affected areas, including cobalt and other minerals in our supply chain determined to be from conflict-affected and high-risk areas (CAHRAs). As part of these efforts, we have become members of The Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA) and the Responsible Minerals Initiative, enabling us to expand our industry collaborative efforts through these memberships utilize RMI’s flagship Responsible Minerals Assurance Process (RMAP) through our supply chain and leverage resources, such as RMI’s eLearning Academy, to improve our ability to continuously support and build the capacity of our suppliers and smelters/refiners in their risk assessment and due diligence efforts.
Our responsible minerals sourcing program – which covers all mineral, as well as suppliers and smelters/refiners previously or currently certified as “conflict free” and non certified suppliers and smelters/refiners on their journey towards certification – is based on three key steps to identify and respond to risks in the minerals supply chain.
First, to prioritize our due diligence efforts we regularly conduct suppliers mapping exercises to identify within our vast and complex supply chain, which can be up to 6 layers deep in some areas, may be at greatest risk. These mapping exercises are based on four criteria – supplier reputation, material risk, country risk, and sustainability compliance – and covers our entire direct and indirect supply chains, including our contract manufacturers. We continue to use Assent Compliance Manager (ACM), a third-party system managed by Assent to assist us in surveying our supply chain. ACM helps us compare facilities indicated in survey responses to the list of smelters/refiners maintained by the RMI and determines the risk from smelters/refiners based on Assent’s criteria (e.g., audit status, proximity to DRC and covered countries). If we identify allegations of forced labor, which we view as zero-tolerance issue, we will immediately partner with our third-party auditor to investigate the allegation and determine a swift course of action.
The second key step in our program is regularly reviewing and approving the standards for certification that we use to determine human rights and conflict minerals risks further upstream in our supply chain. Given the number of standards available, this step is critical in our ability to identify and apply standards that focus on the potential risks and impacts most salient to the mineral and materials that go into developing our products.
The third step in or program is engaging directly with our priority suppliers to review our plans for certification and to gather and track their feedback on the effectiveness of our ongoing risk mitigation efforts. In addition, we regularly engage with key industry stakeholders, including standard development initiatives such as the Initiative for Responsible Mining Assurance (IRMA), which is governed by the representatives from multiple sectors, including affected communities. These external engagements have helped us make significant improvements to our own plans, strategies, and overall due diligence program and have provided us with opportunities to contribute our knowledge and experiences to advancing good practices across the industry. We also continuously explore emerging methodologies and tools, such as blockchain-based digitalization tools, to expand our reach, influence, and effectiveness beyond our priority suppliers.
For more details on our approach to responsible minerals sourcing and to view a full list of smelters/refiners and their RMI audit conformant status see our Conflict Minerals Policy.
Diversity is an integral part of Corning’s value system and a critical business initiative. We understand the value a diverse supply chain can bring to innovation and productivity, and we are committed to providing access to all suppliers and to promoting diversity in our supply chain.
One of the main objectives of our supplier diversity initiative is to give diverse businesses an opportunity to participate in our contracting and procurement process. We are also working to increase the amount of quality products and services we obtain directly from diverse suppliers.
Corning recognizes the following certification organizations: NGLCC, NMSDC, WBENC, Disability-IN, NVBDC, NaVOBA, USPAACC, USHCC
Categories of U.S. supplier diversity:
- Minority-Owned Business Enterprise (MBE)
- Women-Owned Business Enterprise (WBE)
- Disability-Owned Business Enterprise (DOBE)
- Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE)
- Service-Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (SDVBE)
- Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE)
- Historically Black Colleges or Universities (HBCU)
- Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone)
- Small Business Administration 8(a) Program (SBA8A)
- Small Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (SDBE)
- Veteran-Owned Business Enterprise (VBE)
- LGBT-Owned Business Enterprise (LGBTBE)
Health & Safety
Our corporate vision is to deliver an injury-free workplace for every employee, contractor, and business partner. We hold ourselves accountable to stringent health and safety guidelines and expect our supplier partners to do the same.
Suppliers shall minimize the incidence of work-related injury and illness to help achieve a safe and healthy work environment, enhancing the quality of products and services, consistency of productions, worker retention and morale. We also expect that suppliers recognize that ongoing worker input and education is essential to identifying and solving health and safety issues. Learn more from our Health & Safety statement.
For information about contractor Health & Safety in the prior year, see here.
Policies & Statements
Policies & Statements
Our supplier code of conduct sets the standard for how Corning and its supplier partners around the world work together to develop and deliver products and services responsibly.
We strive to ensure that our supply chain fulfills our commitment to respect human rights through responsible sourcing practices.
Corning is committed to policies and procedures that promote human rights compliance in our operations and in our supply chain.
At Corning, we pledge to uphold the highest standards for fundamental human rights and view them as a key component of a socially responsible supply chain.
Protecting the privacy of personal and business data within our supplier network is a key priority at Corning.
The purpose of this policy is to minimize the risk of Corning confidential information being lost or stolen through interactions with suppliers, contractors, and consultants.
Suppliers, and other relevant stakeholders, can submit any questions or report any violation or grievance to Corning's confidential and anonymous Code of Conduct Line 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
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