16% of Loblaw Independent Shareholders Vote for Greater Human Rights Oversight at Canada’s Largest Food Retailer

16% of Loblaw Independent Shareholders Vote for Greater Human Rights Oversight at Canada's Largest Food Retailer


Today, Loblaw's independent shareholders voted 16% in favour of a human rights shareholder proposal filed by B.C. Government and Service Employees' Union (BCGEU). The proposal asks Canada's largest food retailer to assign board-level responsibility for human rights.

Loblaw scores poorly on international human rights benchmarks and lags behind its global peers who have adopted the UN Global Compact and UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights.

In response to today's vote, BCGEU President Stephanie Smith released the following statement: 

"It is long past time for this enormously profitably company to catch up with its peers and take decisive action on human rights.

During the COVID-19 pandemic we have all become acutely aware of the importance of food supply chains and the essential work done by grocery store workers-like those employed by Loblaws-to maintain those supply chains and keep Canadians safe and healthy.

There is no better time for Loblaw to demonstrate to their customers, their workers and their investors that they are committed to human rights as a whole organization-from the highest levels of leadership in corporate headquarters to the frontlines of their retail business and throughout their supply chains.

The BCGEU will be watching their progress and today's result shows that other shareholders will be as well."

This shareholder proposal is part of the union's cutting-edge capital stewardship program that helps us leverage our power as an investor to demand action from companies on the issues that matter for our members, and all working people. Recently, the union has filed proposals calling for policies on greenhouse gas emissions, supply chain transparency, enhanced corporate governance and human rights policies, among others.

For further information and media requests, please contact:

Emma Pullman, BCGEU, [email protected]


The shareholder proposal can be viewed here: 



The investor brief can be viewed here: