Nintendo have recently found themselves the victim of a campaign by Walk Free, a human rights organisation, who claim the Japanese company’s products are using raw materials acquired through slave labour.
Their “Slavery is not a game” campaign was accompanied by a parody video (below), in which Mario and Luigi see themselves buried under a flurry of complaint letters.
Regarding such concept, Walk Free’s movement director Debra Rosen explains: “Whilst this parody allows gamers to demand that Nintendo articulate credible steps to ensure slavery is not in its supply chain, slavery is not a game. We’re not mocking the problem, we’re poking fun at the absurdity of Nintendo’s lack of response.
“Nintendo – as the world’s largest maker of video game machines – should be leading other consumer electronics companies in showing the public that they are working to have a supply chain free of slavery. Instead, they are lagging behind.”
In response to such claims, Nintendo UK have issued the following statement:
“We take our social responsibilities as a global company very seriously. Nintendo outsources the manufacture and assembly of all Nintendo products to our production partners and therefore is not directly involved in the sourcing of raw materials that are ultimately used in our products.
“We nonetheless take our social responsibilities as a global company very seriously and expect our production partners to do the same. For this reason, we established the Nintendo CSR Procurement Guidelines. These Guidelines were originally issued in July 2008 and then revised in April 2011 to provide a specific guide for our production partners regarding socially responsible procurement practices.
“We expect that our production partners comply with these guidelines, which are based on relevant laws, international standards and guidelines that focus on protecting human rights, ensuring workplace safety, promoting corporate ethics and safeguarding the environment. These guidelines include provisions on the sourcing of raw materials and the importance of investigating the source of materials to avoid using any unlawfully collected materials.
“For more information on our production processes, you might want to look at our most recent Corporate Social Responsibility report: http://www.nintendo.co.jp/csr/en/index.html”