Working collaboratively with a global network of key external organizations engaging in issues that carry the greatest social relevance to the markets and in the communities we serve
Engaging with our stakeholders helps ensure that we understand and seek to address their concerns. We listen to our stakeholders to understand evolving priorities and interests, and also share our own experience in important issues to the wider community. In fiscal 2016, Walgreens Boots Alliance worked with dozens of non-governmental organizations, government bodies and agencies, employee groups, local community groups, suppliers, customer panels, pharmacist associations, academics and the media to deepen our understanding of their expectations and interests.
For example, as a model of success in hiring people with disabilities, Walgreens has been sought out by some 200 employers, civic leaders and government officials who wish to study and benchmark our disability inclusion programs and practices.
In fiscal 2016 Walgreens initiated dialogue with Safer Chemicals, Happier Families to help us understand issues around ingredients. Similarly, we engaged in dialogue with the American Chamber of Commerce around best practices in waste disposal and recycling.
An area of extensive stakeholder engagement in fiscal 2016 involved the epidemic of opioid overdoses in the United States, which Walgreens sought to contribute to solving through two initiatives.
First, Walgreens worked with state governments and regulators across the country to allow for medication take-back programs to be implemented in pharmacies. In February 2016, Walgreens announced the first ongoing national effort of its kind by a retailer to install safe medication disposal kiosks in drugstores across the country. To help combat drug abuse and reduce the misuse of medications, the kiosks provide a year-round safe and convenient method to dispose of unwanted, unused or expired prescriptions, including controlled substances, at no cost.
As of 31 August 2016, Walgreens had installed nearly 500 kiosks at pharmacies in 34 states and Washington, D.C. Since implementation of the safe medication disposal program, more than 9 metric tonnes of medications have been collected and safely disposed.
Second, Walgreens worked with regulators to help update rules to allow for dispensing the lifesaving opioid antidote naloxone without requiring a prescription. As many states worked to update their rules, Walgreens announced plans to make naloxone available without a prescription in 35 states and in Washington D.C. As of 31 August, the naloxone program had been implemented in 18 states.
Another example of work with external stakeholders in fiscal 2016 was Walgreens adopting a policy on cage-free eggs. This was developed through work with The Humane Society of the United States animal protection group and with The Humane League, a farm animal advocacy nonprofit. Walgreens is committed to providing 100 percent cage-free shell and liquid eggs to stores nationwide by 2025, based on available supply.
Walgreens Cage Free Egg Statement