Ethics & Human Rights

Doing What’s Right


Yum! Brands’ success is built on the integrity and high ethical standards of our employees, a fact confirmed by our stakeholders in our materiality assessment. Our ethics and compliance program, based on our Global Code of Conduct, demands the highest ethical standards in all of our operations around the globe.

Our Global Code of Conduct is more than a document — it is the foundation for the way we conduct ourselves and do business throughout the world. It calls for the highest standards of ethical behavior from our Board members and all employees of Yum! Brands and its subsidiaries. Every year, our Board of Directors and Yum!’s 4,000 most senior employees must certify in writing that they have read and understand the Code and complete a conflicts of interest questionnaire. The Code is available online in seven languages and was most recently updated in 2018 to reflect our company’s transformation. Included as a supplement to our Global Code of Conduct is our International Anti-Corruption Policy. This policy applies to all directors, officers and employees of Yum!, as well as to our international agents, consultants, joint venture partners and any other third-party representatives acting on our behalf.

Beyond regularly reviewing the Global Code of Conduct, all company-owned restaurant employees are required to participate in annual compliance training. Different topics are covered each year, ranging from anticorruption to data security. Specific training areas and formats vary by brand and market.

We encourage employees to raise ethical concerns and provide multiple channels for them to do so safely and anonymously. An independent third party operates an ethics hotline, known as The Network, on our behalf. The Network is available 24/7 in more than 120 countries and territories. Once a call is received, the third party relays the information to Yum! management, who review every claim and investigate when necessary. The Audit Committee of our Board has established additional procedures for complaints and concerns of employees regarding accounting and auditing matters, including the confidential or anonymous submission of such complaints or concerns. More details on these procedures can be found here. Yum! has a strict policy against retaliation for good-faith reports, regardless of their ultimate veracity.

When it comes to interacting with one another, employees are expected to demonstrate mutual respect in all professional relationships. Sexual, racial, ethnic and religious or any other type of harassment, has no place in the Yum! Brands work environment. Harassment includes conduct such as slurs, jokes, intimidation or any other verbal or physical attack upon a person because of gender, sexual orientation, race, religion, national origin or other legally protected status of a person.

It is Yum!’s policy to deal fairly with employees; provide equal opportunity for all in recruiting, hiring, developing, promoting and compensating without regard to race, religion, color, age, gender, disability, genetic information, military or veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, citizenship, national origin or other legally protected status; maintain a professional, safe and discrimination-free work environment; recognize and compensate employees based on their performance; and provide a competitive array of benefits.

Yum! maintains a work environment that respects and supports human rights for all of our employees around the world. This issue, along with Labor Practices, was identified as among our most material issues in our survey of stakeholders. Basic tenets of our human rights policy include:

  • We do not employ underage children or forced laborers.
  • We prohibit physical punishment and abuse.
  • We respect the right of all employees to associate or not to associate with any group as permitted by applicable laws and regulations.
  • We require compliance with all local labor laws in every market where we operate.
  • We promote, protect and help to help ensure the equal rights of all persons, including minorities, women and those with disabilities.
  • We partner with stakeholders to collect input and help guide our human rights efforts.

Yum! holds the same expectations of ethical, legal and socially responsible business practices for its suppliers. Suppliers must abide by all applicable laws, codes or regulations regarding wages and benefits, worker’s compensation, working hours, equal opportunity, worker and product safety, and conflict minerals policies. Yum! Brands also expects that suppliers will conform their practices to the published standards for their industry.

Beyond these minimum standards, our Supplier Code of Conduct sets forth our expectations for suppliers and subcontractors. Topics covered include:

  • Working Hours & Conditions: Suppliers are expected to provide their employees with safe and healthy working conditions and reasonable daily and weekly work schedules.
  • Nondiscrimination: Suppliers should follow all laws prohibiting discrimination in hiring and employment on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, age, physical disability, national origin, creed or any other basis prohibited by law.
  • Child Labor: Suppliers should not use workers under the legal age for employment. In no event should suppliers use employees younger than 14 years of age.
  • Forced and Indentured Labor: No supplier should perform work or produce goods for Yum! Brands using labor under any form of indentured servitude, nor should threats of violence, physical punishment, confinement or other form of physical, sexual, psychological or verbal harassment or abuse be used as a method of discipline or control.
  • Notification to Employees: To the extent required by law, suppliers should establish policies implementing the standards outlined in the Supplier Code of Conduct and post notices of those policies for their employees. The notices should be in all languages necessary to fully communicate the policy to employees.

We expect suppliers to review such requirements internally to verify compliance with the Code. In addition, we reserve the right to conduct unannounced assessments, audits and inspections of supplier facilities. To manage performance, audits of key suppliers are conducted annually, which include a review of the supplier’s internal processes and site visits, as needed. Violations may lead to disciplinary action, including termination of the supplier relationship for repeated violations or noncompliance.