Bring Purpose to Your Portfolio

The IA Clarington Inhance SRI Funds, sub-advised by responsible investing pioneer Vancity Investment Management Ltd. (VCIM), can help you achieve your wealth-creation goals while meaningfully contributing to a future that’s more sustainable, inclusive and just for us all.

Actively engaged for a better future

2021/Q1 2022 Engagement Activities

31 Companies engaged

11 Shareholder resolutions filed

14 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) advanced

27 Investor statements of support, alliances or initiatives joined

VCIM does more than invest in companies with attractive return potential and exceptional environmental, social and governance (ESG) practices. Central to the VCIM investment process is a robust program of shareholder engagement designed to ensure that companies held in the Inhance SRI Funds continuously strive to elevate and expand their ESG commitments.

Below are six recent examples of VCIM’s engagement activities. You can learn more about these examples and the team’s other engagement priorities by downloading the annual Dialogue to Action report.

The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted how vital it is to ensure rapid and equitable distribution of vaccines. As of April 2022, 19 countries – mostly in Africa – have yet to vaccinate even 10% of their populations. VCIM is a signatory to the Access to Medicine Foundation, an independent non-profit organization that helps pharmaceutical companies do more for people living in low- and middle-income countries. VCIM also signed the Global Investor Statement in Support of an Effective, Fair and Equitable Global Response to Covid-19 as well as a letter urging several pharmaceutical companies to integrate World Health Organization goals for equitable access to Covid-19 vaccines into their executive remuneration strategy.

A major health threat that experts have been warning about for years, AMR occurs when bacteria and other disease-causing microbes become “superbugs” by developing resistance to previously effective drugs. In a world where AMR is prevalent, a single cut can lead to a fatal infection – an outcome that was common in the pre-antibiotic world. VCIM is part of the Investor Action Committee on AMR, a coalition that leverages investor influence to combat superbugs. In 2021, as part of VCIM’s work with this initiative, the team participated in the Investor AMR Roundtable, which provides guidance on current risks and opportunities and how companies can disclose them.

By some estimates, biodiversity loss could cost the global economy $10 trillion by 2050. To help protect biodiversity, VCIM signed the Finance for Biodiversity Pledge, joined the Finance for Biodiversity Foundation and signed onto Nature Action 100. To help combat biodiversity loss stemming from pesticides, VCIM joined the Investor Environmental Health Network to coordinate engagement. For biodiversity loss resulting from plastic pollution, VCIM signed the Business Call for a UN Treaty on Plastic Pollution, which urges UN member states to adopt a legally binding treaty to address plastic pollution. VCIM is also participating in Ceres’ Valuing Water Finance Investor Group, which published Corporate Expectations for Valuing Water and is planning several company engagements.

VCIM actively encourages companies to take responsibility for life-cycle emissions associated with their operations and products, as well as disclose their climate risk exposure and strategies. For example, VCIM filed a shareholder resolution with Constellation Software for climate-related disclosures in Q1 of this year. VCIM also co-led an investor group that engaged with Trane Technologies to further enhance disclosure as part of the Climate Action 100+ initiative. To complement the efforts of Climate Action 100+, VCIM, through Vancity Credit Union, joined Climate Engagement Canada as a founding partner and contributor. Underscoring the various climate statements and initiatives VCIM has signed, the team has committed to the Net Zero Asset Managers Initiative.

Transparency has been the core theme of VCIM’s recent governance-related engagements. VCIM filed shareholder proposals with TD Bank, RBC, CIBC, Scotiabank, and Canadian Pacific Railway, encouraging them to publish the ratio of CEO pay to median employee pay. Tracking this metric over an extended period can help address disparities in pay increases and aid in companies’ efforts to improve employee satisfaction. Over the past year, VCIM also engaged with RioCan and Constellation Software, encouraging them to enhance their transparency on a variety of ESG factors.

VCIM is very active on a variety of human rights issues, including forced labour, Indigenous rights and facial recognition technology. For instance, VCIM has supported calls to implement legislation that targets imports made from forced labour in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region in Northwest China, as well as legislation that would require improved human rights due diligence in the U.S., E.U. and Canada. In addition, VCIM co-filed a shareholder proposal with Nike, urging the company to publish a human rights impact assessment on actual and potential human rights issues throughout its supply chain. VCIM also led engagements on forced labour in the technology sector with Cisco and was a supporting investor on engagements with Amazon, Apple, Alphabet and Microsoft.

VCIM does not invest in companies whose primary line of business includes:

  • Fossil fuels

  • Tobacco

  • Nuclear power

  • Military weapons

  • Adult entertainment

  • Gambling

You are using a web browser that is out of date.
Your experience may differ compared to newer, up-to-date web browsers. Please switch to another web browser if available.