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June 2010
In This Issue
1. New Tools: SAI & IFC Handbook
2. Innovating Academia with Social Dialogue
3. Comparing SA8000 & ISO26000
4. "So, how are we doing compared to our peers?"
5. New SA8000 Certification Statistics
6. In Their Own Words: SAI's Summer Interns
7. Highlights & Announcements
SAI's e-Newsletter Archive

The Corporate Responsibility Code Book

The Corporate Responsibility Code Book, 2nd Ed. Published by Greenleaf, author Deborah Leipziger's forthcoming revised second edition is a key reference text on corporate codes of conduct. The SA8000 standard is included, along with ETI's base code, and others.

Forthcoming Publication
July 2010
Pre-order a copy
Job Openings

Director of SAI India Office
Social Accountability International (SAI)
India/New York


now accepting applications
 for Fall 2010 interns
New York, NY

Upcoming Events

Sustainable Agriculture Partnerships 2010
10-11, San Francisco, CA, US

Social Accountability International (SAI) is a non-governmental, multi-stakeholder organization established to advance the human rights of workers and the health of enterprises by promoting decent work conditions, labor rights, and corporate social responsibility through voluntary standards.

SAI- Human Rights at Work
Website: www.sa-intl.org

For newsletter inquiries contact: Joleen Ong, jong@sa-intl.org
New Tools: Publication of "Measure and Improve Your Labor  Standards Performance" Handbook
SAI & IFC Release their Practical Reference Book for the World Bank's International Finance Corporation

"Measure & Improve Your Labor Standards Performance"
SAI is pleased to announce the publication of "Measure & Improve Your Labor Standards Performance," a Handbook and Toolkit for the World Bank's International Finance Corporate (IFC) Performance Standard 2 (PS2).

The Handbook and Toolkit, written and designed by SAI for all IFC- invested companies, is a practical reference book, and aims to provide an understanding of the fundamental management systems and internal staff capabilities required for improving the labor standards performance, both in a company and in its supply chain. Additionally, it provides a step-by-step guide to assist company management to develop or improve labor standards performance management systems.

The wealth of resources within the handbook was informed by SAI's years of training experience in the field and work with leading companies on the use of management systems to improve labor standards performance in a company and its supply chain, and IFC's experience in a broad range of industry sectors and countries worldwide. It features SAI's process-based rating system to help companies measure and improve their performance. It aims to support senior management, as well as professionals in the human resources, compliance, and sourcing departments. Especially unusual is its wide applicability to companies in any industry. 

Key sections of the Handbook:
  • Building the Business Case
  • The Elements of Labor Standards Performance
  • Labor Standards Performance in your Company
  • Forming an Effective Internal Labor Standards Performance Team
  • Labor Standards Performance in Your Supply Chain
  • Management System Tools with Step-by-Step Guide
The full handbook is available through the IFC or SAI. Click here to get a glimpse of this handbook.

For more information, contact Kate Critchell, Assistant Manager- Corporate Programs & Training, KCritchell@sa-intl.org.   
Innovating Academia with Social Dialogue Program in Honduras
SAI Project Cultivar's Local Partner in Honduras CDH Teams Up with Local University UNAH to Educate Future Leaders

[Photo: SAI Project Cultivar Local Partner- CDH convene for a meeting. From left, Efrain Arrivillaga- President, Adelina Vasquez- Executive Director, Dr. Hector Hernandez- Labor Consultant and Professor, Daisy Mejilla- Project Manager]
SAI's local partner in Project Cultivar, the Center for Human Development (CDH),  and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Honduras (UNAH) in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, recently announced the creation of the Diploma in Social Dialogue and Management Systems, an innovative academic program offered by UNAH that will educate future leaders on fundamental issues in labor relations.

Since the June 2009 coup that shook Honduran society, a palpable weakening of democratic institutions engendered by the precarious political context has impacted social and economic aspects of national life. To work to stem the tide of the intensifying polarization within society, CDH and Project Cultivar evaluated their operational strategy and concluded that a useful way to promote social dialogue between the public and private sectors was not to wait until individuals become employees and executives but to provide a new vision of professional development for those who will eventually hold decision-making roles. The central objective of the Diploma is to introduce a tripartite approach to the societal discourse by involving companies, workers and government and linking this process to the university.

The curriculum of the Diploma will encompass four major areas: socio-political analysis, labor rights, social dialogue, and management systems.  The three-month course, which includes a field work component, currently has 34 registrants, including union leaders, university students, and government employees.

The Diploma will be offered in the northern part of the country beginning July 2, 2010 and in the southern region, starting July 9, 2010. The program is geared toward those key actors of the tripartite dialogue process such as union delegates, agricultural workers in the melon and banana sectors, government employees, and students from disciplines such as law and industrial engineering.

Want to learn more? Contact SAI's Eliza Wright, EWright@sa-intl.org
For more information about SAI's local partners, click here

Benchmarking Social Responsibility: Comparing ISO26000 & SA8000
The forthcoming ISO 26000 guidance standard for social responsibility has the potential to reach wider audience of companies and organizations

[Figure above: Information in the table is from "SA8000: The First Decade. Implementation, Influence, and Impact.]
The development and recent approval of the ISO 26000 guidance standard on social responsibility, as the first ISO standard on social responsibility, seeks to leverage the work of social responsibility initiatives into one comprehensive document covering human rights, labor rights, environment, fair operational practices, consumer issues, and community involvement. Additionally, it will leverage ISO's ability to engage a wider audience, as many producers in developing countries are familiar with working with existing ISO standards.

The development of this guidance standard took a multi-stakeholder approach. SAAS Executive Director, Rochelle Zaid has been a member of the ISO Working Group on Social Responsibility since it was founded 5 years ago. SAAS is an independent accreditation agency, which has an affiliation agreement with SAI. SAI's involvement and input focused on the labor rights and human rights principles, and sought to ensure that this ISO initiative is working in alignment with existing good practices. The SA8000 standard will be included in ISO 26000's informative annex, which will show a sample of tools to assist organizations who are seeking to benchmark themselves, and to show that they are adhering to the principles.

SAI is preparing several training and auditing tools that will enable employers and auditors to better develop their understanding and implementation of several compliance areas covered in the ISO 26000 guidance standard. SAI's programs offer companies a ready resource for measuring, improving, and demonstrating progress toward the principles of ISO26000, specifically for human rights and labor conditions. Whatever their location or industry, companies might choose to earn SA8000 certification as a credible and well-recognized indicator of high performance in these issues.  SAI's Supplier Tiered Rating System is an additional tool which enables buyers to evaluate a supplier's internal capacity and processes related to social compliance; it builds on SA8000 compliance requirements and embed them in a broader analysis of management systems and progress. The tiered rating system can also be adapted to other social or environmental standards.  

SAI's training and technical assistance programs can help companies make targeted improvements in several of the issue areas covered by ISO26000.  Specific courses - both broad and in-depth - include Social Auditing, Freedom of Association and Rights to Collective Bargaining, Wages and Working Hours, Stakeholder Engagement, Management of Supply Chain, Worker-Manager Communications.  Going forward, these courses will include modules referring to the relevant ISO26000 guidance.  In addition, SAI's new supply chain management training and tools will enable users to build into their management systems benchmarks drawn down from ISO 26000 guidance on compliance. 

SAI and SAAS look forward to ISO 26000's expected publication and towards its potential for guiding more employers around the world towards more engagement in CSR and responsible labor practices.

For more information, contact Rochelle Zaid, RZaid@saasaccreditation.org.
"So, how are we doing compared to our peers?"
SAI Pilots its 'Supply Chain Management Rating System' to Measure Six Companies' Progress for Supply Chain Improvement

"How are we doing compared to our peers?" is one of key questions that SAI receives from its member companies. Additionally, many people from the investment community and beyond ask, "How are companies doing?" The frequency of these questions emphasizes the importance of comparative improvement through a process-based approach, allowing companies to put their progress into context and to map out next steps.

Over a year ago SAI began developing a pilot project to develop indicators that could demonstrate a measurable way to report on companies and their suppliers' labor practices, and progress towards its social responsibility goals. Launched last month, this project is working with 6 Corporate Program members to pilot the 'Supply Chain Management Rating System,' part of SAI's process-based rating tools to help companies measure their progress in managing their social compliance in the supply chain. The ratings system is on a scale of 1-5, with 5 indicating a mature management system that is well-implemented.

Ultimately, this Supply Chain Management Rating System tool can be utilized in three ways:
  1. Internally- to identify strengths and weaknesses in order to drive improvement
  2. Benchmarking- to assess its performance in comparison to other participating companies
  3. Public Reporting- data and metrics to be transparent
In addition, the project involves Aaron Bernstein and Larry Beeferman from the Harvard Law School Labor and Worklife Program's Investor Initiative to utilize the findings from the pilot  to seek input from the financial community. The overall purpose of these indicators would be to measure non-financial risk due to labor-related compliance in a company's supply chain.

The rating system is part of SAI's approach to helping to achieve socially responsible supply chains . SAI focuses on processes and management systems, instead of solely focusing on code violations. It stresses the goal of continual improvement,  This rating system, along with several other SAI-developed tools for its Corporate Program members, is a guidance that helps to set clear targets for making improvements through training, technical assistance, and tools. 

Findings from the report will be presented at SAI's upcoming Fall 2010 Advisory Board meeting scheduled for November in India.

SAI hopes to recruit more companies - both members and non-members - to participate in this pilot. Please contact Kate Critchell, Assistant Manager- Corporate Programs & Training, KCritchell@sa-intl.org

TopSA8000 Certification Statistics as of March 31, 2010
1.2 Million and Counting!

Workers Employed by Country

# Employees: 1,234,335
#Certified Facilities: 2,151
# Countries Represented: 60
# Sectors Represented: 67
SA8000 Certified Facilities List

These certification statistics were compiled by SAAS Program Intern, Amy Finnegan. For more information, please contact SAAS Program Manager, Lisa Bernstein, lbernstein@saasaccreditation.com.

In Their Own Words: SAI's Summer Interns
SAI welcomes its northeastern fleet of interns- Representing Wellesley College, Cornell University & Syracuse University. They will be contributing to SAI's new blog- 'Human Writes at Work.'  SAI is proud to introduce them, in their own words.

Stefanie Colish, Syracuse
SA8000 Certified Facilities Industry Chart
"I am a graduate student at Syracuse University working toward my masters in International Relations, with a concentration in Economic Development and Human Rights. Through my course work and previous experiences I have become particularly interested in CSR and how to implement ethical corporate practices through certification. My interests led me to SAI/SAAS because of its focus on ethical and responsible work place practices. I am excited to be interning for SAAS this summer and to be learning more about the accreditation process. I will be working with Lisa Bernstein on the SAAS website, marketing materials and the collection of certification data."

Nathalie Herman, Wellesley
SA8000 Certified Facilities Industry Chart
"I am an Economics and French major at Wellesley College interested in issues of human rights and poverty, focusing particularly on developing countries. I chose to intern at SAI because of its honorable focus on improving labor standards and promoting sustainable development worldwide. I wanted to be a part of this mission and learn more about SA8000 and the work of SAI. After I graduate from Wellesley, I hope to focus on improving the developing world, and believe that SAI is a great place to begin that journey and goal. I will be working with Eileen Kaufman. I am excited to learn and contribute to SAI throughout the summer as my first week here has already been wonderful."

Allison Kwan, Wellesley
SA8000 Certified Facilities Industry Chart
"I'm a rising senior at Wellesley College majoring in Economics and minoring in Women's Studies. I'm a native of California who is venturing to the East Coast to explore. Over the past year, I studied abroad in Beijing, China, and became fascinated with China's labor and human rights issues. Because of this interest, I applied to intern at SAI. This summer, I'll be working in the Corporate Programs and Training department. Already, I feel that I've absorbed a lot of information about CSR and compliance."

Weiye Kou, Wellesley
SA8000 Certified Facilities Industry Chart
" I am a rising junior at Wellesley College, double-majoring in History and Economics. I first got involved in environmental activism and, later, CSR, in China and Singapore. I am very concerned about workers' welfare in China, where much of the consumer goods in supermarkets were manufactured. This is because the low income and poor well-being of average Chinese workers meant tremendous human suffering and social unrest, in addition to a drain on the economic potential of the major emerging economy. I believe that improvement of workers' welfare, initiated either by the legislature or the business community itself, is the ultimate solution to the economic quagmire that China, together with some of the other emerging economies that started from an export-oriented strategy, is stuck in today.
From my experience at SAI, I hope to learn about the strengths and limitations of international standards in the area of labor rights, particularly how an international standard adapts to specific local conditions and the concrete solutions that industrial managers come up with to deal with their workers' concerns."

Dianne Milner, Cornell
SA8000 Certified Facilities Industry Chart
"I am a rising senior in the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University with a minor in International Relations.  As a first semester junior I took courses in International Labor Law, Peace & Conflict Studies, and Corporate Social Responsibility, which sparked my overall interest in labor and human rights abuses across the globe.  With the help of a Professor at Cornell, I found SAI, which seemed to be the perfect place to fuse all of my interests and gain worthwhile experience for a future career in this field.  Additionally, as I recently returned from a semester abroad in Barcelona, I hope to put my Spanish language skills to work as a member of the Latin American programs team." 

Highlights & Announcements

May 10-14- The Ethos Institute Annual Board Meeting & International Conference included the participation of SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin, where as an Ethos Board member, she engaged in discussions that focused on the implementation of Ethos' 10 Year Plan.   

May 20-
Congratulations to Olinda Hassan, former SAI Intern Summer '09 and Wellesley '10 graduate, who received a Fulbright Scholarship for work in the English Teaching Assistantship program in Bangladesh! Click here to read more about her upcoming work, and her words of wisdom for SAI's new interns.

SAI Lead Trainer Vic Thorpe, center, discusses with training participants at SAI's Advanced SA8000 Auditor Training Course in Bucharest, Romania June 9-11 2010. Photo credit: Eugen Manu.

June 11- Send Us Your Best (Training) Shot! Thanks to Eugen Manu, participant in SAI's Advanced Auditor Training Course in Bucharest, for sharing the above training photo. Got something to share? Send Kate Critchell your best shot! 

June 15- SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin and SAI Advisory Board member, Dr. Morton Winston joined discussions at the International Finance Corporation (IFC), which focused on the proposed changes to their Policy and Performance Standards on Social and Environmental Sustainability

June 16- SAI Launches 'Human Writes at Work,"
a collaborative blog with postings contributed by SAI Interns and produced by SAI's Joleen Ong. Get connected!

June 16-17-
The IFC 2010 Corporate Responsibility Forum included participation from SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin, and focused on strategic community investment and measuring returns on sustainability investments. 

June 24- From Principles to Practice: The Role of SA8000 in Implementing the UN Global Compact- published at the UN Global Compact Leaders Summit, a joint report of SAI, UNGC and CIPE. Case studies of six companies in different countries and different industries, using SA8000 to meet and report on the UNGC principles. Excerpts and ordering information in next newsletter.

July 2010- The Corporate Responsibility Code Book, 2nd Ed. Published by Greenleaf, author Deborah Leipziger's forthcoming revised second edition is a key reference text on corporate codes of conduct. The SA8000 standard is included, along with ETI's base code, and others. Pre-order a copy.