In January 2017, CBIS met with management to discuss human trafficking initiatives and establish a rapport with the company. In response to a shareholder proposal filed with United Continental, the company has substantially strengthened its human rights policy. It applies to all 85,000 employees of which 23,000 are flight attendants. CBIS and investors will continue to provide input and resources toward effective implementation of the human rights policy that includes further training to monitor and act on human trafficking activity. Specifically, we are encouraging United to train its flight attendants to identify signs of human trafficking and to disclose the effectiveness of such programs, continue to improve its human rights policies to include stricter requirements on forced labor and child exploitation, and to sign The Code of Conduct for the Protection of Children from Sexual Exploitation.
In 2016, CBIS began to engage United on the issue of human trafficking in the airline sector. Airport personnel are in a unique position to discern possible trafficking situations. As the fourth largest airline in the world, United has the potential to play a vital role in identifying and assisting trafficking victims. While other companies are taking action, United’s reporting does not indicate if the company has developed effective internal controls. United published a human rights policy statement last year that repudiates forced labor, child labor and sexual exploitation and a commitment to cooperate with law enforcement. CBIS will work with United to ensure the company is demonstrating implementation by training flight attendants, developing programs with law enforcement, raising awareness and reporting annually on progress and challenges.