This is Social Accountability International's newsletter. We warmly welcome your
New Living Wage Benchmarks for Dhaka
and Surrounding Cities
SAI together with the Global Living Wage Coalition has published a Living Wage Report with
for Dhaka and surrounding satellite cities in Bangladesh. The report focuses on areas with a large number of garment factories. It is the result of extensive field research and stakeholder consultations by the team of Richard and Martha Anker and researchers at the Centre for Operations Research and Training.
"Our hope is that these benchmarks will accelerate progress towards practical implementation of living wages,"
says SAI's CEO Jane Hwang. "We recognize that a wide range of strategies are necessary to work towards the goal of improving wages, with the collaboration of governments, unions and worker representatives, producers, buyers, brands and retailers and other stakeholders. We acknowledge that it may not always be possible to pay a living wage overnight, but we can and must take progressive steps," she adds.
Living wage entails that workers and their families should make enough money by working a normal work week to provide for a decent basic lifestyle. The living wage estimates in the report will contribute to a long-term process of helping Bangladeshi workers, across all sectors, escape the cycle of poverty.
Living wage has always been a fundamental element in SAI's SA8000® Standard for decent work. While the newly launched benchmarks are not yet a requirement for certification, SAI will complete a gap analysis of current living wage calculations and the new benchmarks and will provide specific guidance on how to apply the benchmarks for certification.
To learn more about SAI's work with the Global Living Wage Coalition,
SAAS Appoints John Brookes as Executive Director
Social Accountability Accreditation Services (SAAS)
has appointed John Brookes as its new Executive Director. SAAS is SAI's affiliate organization that oversees the evaluation, accreditation and monitoring of organizations that audit and certify organizations to social standards.
Mr. Brookes brings to SAAS more than twenty-five years of experience in the field of social certification, accreditation and monitoring. "John's long association with SAAS and SAI, combined with his deep knowledge and experience in the field of social auditing, will be valuable assets as he leads SAAS into its next chapter," commented Morton Winston, Chair of SAAS Board of Directors.
Mr. Brookes was involved in the development of the SA8000® Standard for decent work in the 1990s. Since then, he has contributed to the regular updating of the standard's oversight requirements and protocols. His previous positions with SGS and AIG have equipped him with extensive knowledge of social, environmental and quality assessment systems.
Mr. Brookes considers the improvement and development of sustainable social responsibility practices as one of the greatest challenges of the 21st century. He says "I'm excited to contribute to SAAS's goal of a world where all people enjoy fair and safe workplaces."
Mr. Brookes will replace Rochelle Zaid, who has led SAAS since its inception and will now transition to a new role as Senior Director of Standards and Impacts at SAI.
Ms. Zaid commented, "With John's in-depth expertise in social certification and accreditation as well as the systems that SAAS supports, we are excited to have him lead SAAS into its next generation. I feel confident in passing on this post to an experienced professional like John."
Tel: 212-391-2106 Ext. 203
SAI Joins the
SAI has joined the Stakeholder Board of the
Association of Professional Social Compliance Auditors (APSCA)
The Stakeholder Board develops recommendations to support APSCA's mission and objectives
provides multi-stakeholder input on technical and governance matters to support t
he Independent Chair, Executive Director and
Executive Board. SAI and its affiliate SAAS are also participating on APSCA's expert working groups, which are reviewing and developing recommendations around audit definitions, auditor competencies and audit firm requirements.
APSCA was founded in 2015 with the mission to
enhance the professionalism and credibility of the individuals and organizations performing independent social compliance audits. Its objective is to develop a certification process to ensure auditors have consistent training, education, background checks, and demonstrated competencies which are standard requirements in comparable professional auditor associations.
The founding members of APSCA are leading social compliance firms, including Arche Advisors, Bureau Veritas, Elevate, Intertek, SGS, RINA, TUV Rheinland, TUV Sud, and UL. APSCA is overseen and supported by IFIA (International Federation of Inspection Agencies) and is currently a committee of IFIA. Earlier this year, the organization hired its first Executive Director, Rona Starr, who previously led McDonald's global social compliance program.
For more information about SAI's collaboration with APSCA, contact Rochelle Zaid (RZaid@sa-intl.org).
Spotlight: Cole Haan ---
SAI's new corporate member
We recently sat down with Ashley Davis, Global Manager of
Corporate Social & Environmental Responsibility, to talk about Cole Haan's decision to become an SAI Explorer Member.
Tell me about Cole Haan.
Cole Haan was founded in 1928, and was reborn in 2013, as an independent company, for the first time in 25 years, after having been previously owned by Nike. With the brand's new independence it is striving to transform from a multi-million dollar U.S. footwear company to a multi-billion dollar global lifestyle brand.
Why was Cole Haan interested in working with SAI?
SAI has experience across many industries and this broad spectrum of experience means they bring lessons from beyond the footwear industry that Cole Haan has operated in. SAI's focus on capacity building and continuous improvement engenders trust and transparency between suppliers and brands, which was something our company desired. We appreciate the practicality of this approach and that it can be applied to companies at any stage of maturity. From the very early stages of building a socially accountable supply chain, to later stages of well-developed supply chains. SAI adapts to each brand.
How does SAI fit into Cole Haan's broader business strategy?
As we grow the business and gain recognition beyond footwear, we are developing a larger and deeper supply chain and look forward to learning the most innovative and efficient approach to managing this area.
How would you characterize the risks in your industry?
Global compliance is complicated across borders where you are faced with diverse regulations from anything from chemical management to water usage to wage laws.
What were you doing before and how did you decide to do a custom project with SAI?
Previously, we had been auditing all of our suppliers against a third-party auditing firm's audit protocol and supplier rating system. We decided to participate in a Social Fingerprint evaluation to pinpoint areas to further the program's effectiveness. We learned there was an opportunity to create a more integrated program, customized to mitigate our particular supply chain risks, and improve social performance and buyer-supplier collaboration overall.
Please describe the project you are currently working on.
It is a three-year multi-phase project, beginning with the re-engineering of our current compliance program that will adopt a management system approach and support continuous improvement, and dialog both within Cole Haan and with our business partners. We expect to have more to share soon.
Any recommendations for companies considering working with SAI?
If you are unsure what you would like to do, or how to think about your supply chain, go through the Social Fingerprint Supply Chain Management evaluation. It's incredibly worthwhile to benchmark against your peers. The insights gained from benchmarking, with third party validation, are valuable and the evaluation provides the tools for incremental improvement and facilitates engagement with internal stakeholders in the compliance conversation.
For more information about SAI's Corporate Programs,
or contact Christie Daly (CDaly@sa-intl.org).
Social Fingerprint® Self-Assessment
Since this spring, almost 600 companies have enrolled in our
SA8000 Social Fingerprint® Self-Assessment
, marking their journey towards greater social impact.
The self-assessment is now available in English, Chinese, Italian and Spanish.
Social Fingerprint is a practical tool that helps companies measure and improve their social performance and management systems and take targeted steps to continually improve. The self-assessment is followed by an independent evaluation, which can be conducted as part of a training and capacity building program or as part of an on-site verification.
Since 2009, over 1,500 companies following a range of codes and standards have used Social Fingerprint, which is process-based and generic. The SA8000 version was launched this May and is now part of the SA8000 certification process. Facilities certified with SA8000:2008 are required to undertake Social Fingerprint and upgrade their certification to SA8000:2014 by June 30, 2017.
For more information, contact Tracie Ninh (TNinh@sa-intl.org).
TenSquared creates change in 100 days
Riding the success of our TenSquared pilot in Shenzhen, we are currently opening enrollment for TenSquared China, Wave 2. The program is open to companies of all industries and sizes. TenSquared brings about change at work in just 100 days. The ambitious program motivates and encourages teams of workers and managers to move past existing power dynamics and to identify innovative solutions to seemingly intractable health and safety challenges in the workplace.
Over 90 % of TenSquared teams meet or exceed their goals. Some examples: In a mere 100 days, a Chinese electronics factory reduced its evacuation time from
twelve to three minutes. In Turkey, a production facility cut the number of limb trauma accidents into half. A Brazilian company decreased employee absenteeism by 60 %, increasing productivity by 12 % during the peak season.
TenSquared was created by SAI and the Rapid Results Institute with support from the Walt Disney Company. For all program updates, visit TenSquared's newly launched website at
For more information and to enroll, contact Stephanie Wilson (SWilson@sa-intl.org).
Sam Cagenello comes to SAI with a professional background in domestic politics and experience with foreign affairs and human rights work. As Executive Assistant, he will support SAI's management, staff and boards to ensure organizational alignment, effectiveness and efficiency. Cagenello has previously worked for United States Senator Richard Blumenthal (CT-D) in his state office in Hartford, Connecticut. As a Staff Assistant, Cagenello interacted with the Senator's constituency by managing correspondence and working on constituent services casework. Cagenello also has experience with election politics, working with the Hillary for America advance team.
With an academic background in history and political science, Cagenello has travelled internationally for various conservation and humanitarian projects. In the last few years, he volunteered with wildlife conservation projects in Costa Rica and South Africa and humanitarian efforts in South Africa and Haiti.
Coordinator, Finance & Administration
Kelli McGrattan has joined SAI as Coordinator for Finance and Administration. She will be responsible for the coordination of workplace operations and procedures to facilitate organizational effectiveness. Originally from New York, McGrattan has previously worked with Amnesty International, the International Rescue Committee, and the Office of Refugee Resettlement, bringing in a wealth of experience in human rights.
McGrattan earned her Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida and a Master of Arts in international affairs with a focus on conflicts and security from the New School in New York. She has always had a passion for the promotion of human rights, which was further strengthened during her semester abroad and travels in Myanmar.