To build a strong business foundation in the United States there must be a clear code of ethics. “The Walt Disney Company incorporates best-in-class business standards as a key pillar of its business practices. ”(Disney) Walt Disney is recognized around the world as providers of all types of entertainment ranging from films, televisions shows, theme parks, consumer products and stores.
The ethical standards of the business are of “top quality” upheld by all the cast members and employees who strive to do the best to identify the company in high regards. To properly define business ethics it would be the proper policies, practice and conduct to follow in a business this would be the regarding potential issues such as bribery, discrimination, and corporate responsibility. In most cases ethics can be thought of as the law, or basic framework some businesses that choose to follow to ensure the acceptance of the public and society.
This law is implemented to set a level of trust between the consumers and the service/product. Ethics is directly associated with the principles and standards, it sets boundaries, and enforces norms like integrity and trust. Walt Disney Corporation is a leading business. As a leading business it has faced a long history of ethical problems. Some issues that have arisen in the past are due to the company’s size and distribution around the world.
A list of numbers in Disney’s 2008 Corporate Responsibility Report illustrated the distribution of Disney’s business partners in the supply chain – the majority of Disney’s active vendors and licensees are located in North America (35%), Asia and Middle East (20%) excluding China and Japan; at the same time, Chinese factories (including Hong Kong and Macau) counted 39% of all the factories actively supplying Disney in 2008” (China Labor Watch, 5). Taking a look at those percentages there is quite a few problematic situations that may occur.
Numerous problems were and are faced in these countries over the life of the Walt Disney Company. Situations with underage and child labor in the factories, the young workers can work as many hours as the adults. Some may exceed 72 hours, they are also required to work 130 hours in one month. For young workers this can be extreme tough and in the United States law even considered to be illegal. Usually it is possible to take one day of leave a month. The true sadness is that these workers can start as early as 13. The overtime compensation may be as low as 97 cents an hour.
The workers are not provided the minimum social insurance that is required by law. The condition these works have been record to be working in past history was horrific exposure to chemical hazards that lead to severe allergic reactions. The factory took a stand-by strategy without providing education, adequate labor protection or physical examinations to the workers. Nevertheless, this situation has benefited Disney in more ways than one. It has provided affordable prices for its people, as well as Disney heroes and princesses are more available to the kids and people, especially kids from families with lower economic capacity.
The Disney’s name is known all around the world. The majority of Disney-branded products are made around the world as well. After facing issues such as we have mentioned Disney consumers began to have conflicting views on the products due to the manner in which they are created. New rules or codes were enacted to help stop these unfortunate issues and clean the name of Disney in order to gain the consumers trust once again. Problems continued to be faced throughout the years by the Walt Disney Company. A strong need of enforcement to comply with acceptable labor standards were in high demand.
In 1996, after several investigations of Disney’s suppliers a report was released under the name of “The U. S. In Haiti: How to get rich on 11 cents an Hour”. It gave the public knowledge on the situation happening in Haiti which was horrific. These workers were ordered to work up to 10 hours a day for up to 50 days in a row. The really ugly part is that these workers are not paid enough to survive even no matter the amount of time they worked. Hard working people would take home as little as a dollar a day. That same year a Code of Conduct for Disney Manufactures was implemented.
Within the code of conduct there is now stipulated rule in regards to child labor. “Manufacturers will not use child labor. The term “child” refers to a person younger than 15 (or 14 where local law allows) or, if higher, the local legal minimum age for employment or the age for completing compulsory education (China Labor Watch)”. The manufacturers who decide to employ a young person must oblige the definition of “children” in order to comply with the law. It is essential for companies to have this code of conduct to demonstrate the ethics of the company brand.
The formation of the Code of Conduct was needed by Disney to continue developing the company in a positive manner. Disney decided after these issues in Haiti had occurred to change the production of its products to China in hopes for a solution. Other ethnical problems faced by employees now are a little less extreme than the first mentioned but remain important. Problems that may occur are like theft, the bending of the rules and bribery. In order to aid this from happening Disney has a plan in play. Employees must adhere to training in the Company’s Standards of Business Conduct and Ethics.
This provides employees worldwide a learning method that is known as “Disney Development Connection”. This trains employees to have the knowledge and training to represent Disney ethically and legally. Solutions to the environmental issues caused by Walt Disney are influentially enforced. Environmental issues are caused by the release of pollutants into the air affecting the mass population, cities, and inclusively the water. This is an effect of accidents that occur, the release of many harmful toxins in the factories as well as the numerous theme parks worldwide.
Not to mention the improper maintenance of equipment in the business that with such high numbers of factories, equipment and people tends to become unavoidable. For the manufacturers the Code of Conduct implements employees with a safe and healthy workplace. Disney does not however, allow for the environmental issues to go under the rug. A good thing Disney does is make a change and educate its followers and audience worldwide to also take change into their own hands. An unavoidable issue faced by big companies is that discrimination.
In the case of Disney is has set its code to be ethnical in seeking multicultural people. It looks to gather talent from a diverse work team. The goal for the company is to have people that reflect and sustain a positive representation of Disney. This is whether it is to fellow employees, customers and the communities of the business itself. The belief of diversity is a core element of the Walt Disney Company. Individuals are asked to show respect for all people. With this code it is hoping to successfully fight the problem of discrimination and win.
The further harassment and discrimination prevention policies dictate that employees must restrain from harassing the people or any other employees for any possible reason. Policies are made to ensure just that from occurring. This includes disputes over race, religion, sex or sexual orientation, age, mental or physically disabilities. These are all protected by the law both state and federal. It is the goal of the company as stipulated in the Ethical code that the reputation is a heritage to be guarded and taken care of to provide the best of Walt Disney Company.
To form a durable business The Walt Disney Company wanted to create magic. The brand is recognized worldwide and has dominated many markets over time. The strong executions of the Code of Conduct and Ethic made after facing some bad paths has shown the power of Disney. Entertainment has such a big control on the people. Disney’s entertainments from films, televisions shows, theme parks, consumer products and stores are working towards a better tomorrow. Great things are expected from the Walt Disney in the present and the future.