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March 2012
1. The 58 Million 'Left-Behind' Children in China
2. Video Interview: The Role of Retailers in Social Accountability Programs
3. Operationalizing the 'Protect, Respect & Remedy' Guiding Principles
4. 'Gender Equality for Sustainable Business' Event
5. RJC & SAI Launch Supplier Training in India
6. Training Spotlight: Mexico City
7. Enroll in Global SA8000 Auditor Training Courses
8. Update: Cotton made in Africa Initiative
9. New Statistics: SA8000 Around the World
10. Highlights & Announcements
Top 3 News Stories 


Magen Tzedek Certification Offers Ethical Assurance


Green Festival 

Green America, April 21-22

(New York, NY)   


ISEAL Conference 2012

ISEAL Alliance, May 29-30 

(Bonn, Germany)  

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


SAI is headquartered in the United States with field representation in Brazil, China, Costa Rica, India, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Philippines, Switzerland, and UAE.

SAI- Human Rights at Work

For newsletter inquiries contact:
SAI Communications Manager
Joleen Ong,
topThe 58 Million 'Left-Behind' Children in China
Reflections on the wider cultural issues associated with the migrant workforce that is powering China's super-competitive export sector
Photos, from left: 1) SAI Lead Trainer Jane Liu (right), Senior Manager Matt Fischer-Daly (second from right) and WE Trainer Harrison Xu (left) with Zhang Zhiru, founder of the Shenzhen Migrant Rights Centre; 2) Transparency is of utmost importance at the Center, where records of donations and funding are publicly available; 3) "Little Brother Wants to Sleep" - photo by Sina Weibo user Mian Qu, which captures the plight of the 'left behind' children.

On a recent field visit to China, the topic of the 58 million "left-behind" children was brought up by virtually everyone we met with: leaders of grassroots migrant worker centers, global brands and government officials. The children's parents are the men and women who have migrated to work in 'China Inc.' -the super-competitive export manufacturing industry that has surged in growth over the past 30 years. These men and women are the very migrant workers that have lifted China's economy to new heights, and their remittances sent home have lifted 49 million people out of poverty since 1990.

58 million is a huge number of children - equal to 2/3 of all children in the U.S.; thus the stress on society of separating a generation of families cannot be underestimated. In the best situations, the grandparents of left-behind children raise them >>Read more  

Article written by SAI Senior Manager, Matt Fischer-Daly. For more information, contact SAI Communications Manager Joleen Ong ( 

The Role of Retailers in Social Accountability Programs
Video interview with SAI - how retailers can ensure safe, fair and ethical workplaces throughout their supply chains 
[VIDEO] Interview with SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin and Executive Director Eileen Kaufman via PLMA Live
In this PLMA Live! interview with SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin and Executive Director Eileen Kaufman, host Tim Simmons asked how and why retailers should participate in social accountability programs, and what's ahead in the field of CSR. PLMA (Private Label Manufacturers Association) is a SAI Corporate Program member at the Supporting level. Below are two excerpts:

How retailers can play an important role in social accountability programs? 
"A lot of the learning and systems here are on the buy side, not only on the sell side. So [if] you're concerned about excessive work hours...the solution to some extent relies on the direct employer, but a lot of that solution rests with the customer -- how they can design systems that will minimize last minute design and volume changes, that will share market forecast information with the producers >>Read more

Watch the full interview above or For more information contact SAI Communications Manager Joleen Ong (

Operationalizing the 'Protect, Respect & Remedy' Guiding Principles
SAI & ICCO partner to integrate the 'Ruggie' framework into a handbook & toolkit for businesses

SAI & ICCO have partnered to develop a handbook, toolkit and training program to help businesses implement the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights in their supply chains.

The SAI/ICCO handbook and training program will assist in the transformation from principles to practice. It will help companies address questions concerning interpretation, scope, and practical integration of their responsibility to respect human rights. The handbook introduces a six-step approach on respecting human rights in international supply chains: 
  • Embedding human rights via a policy commitment
  • Assessing human rights impact
  • Integrating human rights in policies, procedures and responsibilities
  • Tracking human rights implementation
  • Communicating human rights impact
  • Remediating negative human rights impact   
For each step, the implications, rationale and content will be described, with specific cases and practical formats for business to use. Additionally, the handbook intends to provide answers to frequently asked questions >>Read more

For more information, contact SAI Communications Manager Joleen Ong (

'Gender Equality for Sustainable Business'
SAI & UN Women's Gender Equity Seal (GES) highlighted for International Women's Day

  "Amidst all the challenges and opportunities in our world today, one fact is unassailable: countries and companies with higher gender equality enjoy higher levels of growth and performance" - Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women

On 6 March, SAI attended the 4th Annual Women's Empowerment Principles (WEPs) meeting, focused on Gender Equality for Sustainable Business - particularly in the context of the upcoming Rio+20, UN Conference on Sustainable Development.

The topic of gender equality is timely and important, as SAI and UN Women are in the process of developing the GES, a new certification standard. SAI highlighted the GES at one of the five major sessions titled "Demystifying the Metrics: Overcoming Obstacles to Increase Transparency." SAI explained the potential of GES for measuring the degree of gender equality and GES' place as part of a "belt of tools" that could be used by a company >>Read more

The event was hosted by the UN Development Fund for Women and the UN Global Compact. View the webcast from this event For inquiries, please contact SAI Research Associate Caroline Lewis (

RJC & SAI Launch Supplier Training in India

  Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC)-SAI Training in India  

Date: April 25, 2012

Location: Mumbai, India

Description: Learn how to take a management systems approach for suppliers to learn how to improve to meet the RJC Code of Practices 



This training is in continuation of SAI and the Responsible Jewellery Council's (RJC) partnership to provide training and capacity building to suppliers of RJC members. For more information, contact SAI Training Coordinator, Stephanie Wilson (

Training Spotlight: Mexico City
Participants in the SA8000® Basic Auditor Training in Mexico City, January 30- Feb 3, 2012

SAI Lead Trainer Yolanda Brenes (front row, red scarf) led this 5-day course in Mexico City, which included a mix of participants from Certification Bodies and NGOs, and independent consultants from Mexico and El Salvador. Certification Bodies that participated included: LSQA, SGS, TUV and Intertek, and participating NGOs included Cemefi and Save the Children.
We congratulate all participants on successfully passing the course!

For more information about upcoming trainings, view SAI's 2012 Training Schedule. For inquiries, contact SAI Training Coordinator, Stephanie Wilson (

Enroll in Global SA8000® Auditor Training Courses
International Locations & Online Courses Available

Participants at the Basic SA8000® Auditor Training in Fairfield, NJ, U.S., February 2012.




SA8000® Basic Auditor Training   

Location: Bucharest, Romania 

Date: May 9-11      


SA8000® Advanced Auditor Training  

Location: Istanbul, Turkey  

Date: April 11-13



SAI training courses are designed to encourage proficiency in social compliance issues and emphasize the implementation of management systems. Learn about a management-system approach to social compliance auditing and supply chain management. These courses are required for all SA8000® and BSCI auditors, and are also valuable to internal auditors, buyers, managers and workers for auditing to any labor code or standard. The courses are open to all.


For more information, contact SAI Training Coordinator, Stephanie Wilson at


 Back to top

Update: Cotton made in Africa Initiative 

SAI is Cotton made in Africa's US-based representative. Below is news from CmiA:

CmiA Fashion Contest Unites Sustainability & Fashion: "Green is the new black" according to influential fashion critic Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune. From February to July 2012, the foundation will work with textile and advertising companies, and renowned fashion design schools to organize the "Cotton made in Africa Fashion Contest 2012". We will report on the winners in the Fall, watch this space! >>Read more

Learn more about the CmiA initiative at For inquires, please contact the Aid by Trade Foundation's Christina Bredehorst (

New Statistics: SA8000® Around the World
Number of workers, by country 

Highlights & Announcements     

Participants from the SA8000 Advanced Auditor Training Course in Bangalore, March 19-21, 2012

"Consumers and the Supply Chain" SAI President Alice Tepper Marlin was included in this article by Mother Nature Network about how companies around the world are evaluating their supply chains. Read it


"New Label Addresses Ethics in Kosher Food" The ISEAL Alliance published an article about about the new Magen Tzedek Certification program that SAI and SAAS developed with the Magen Tzedek Commission. Read it 

"Child Labor in Agriculture: Some New Developments to an Ancient Problem"SAI Advisory Board Member Dorianne Beyer, Esq., published this article in the Journal of Agromedicine, Vol. 12, Issue 2, view it


"Women in the Workplace: Gender-Specific Challenges in the Corporate World" Olinda Hassan, former SAI Intern from Wellesley College (Summer 2009) and 2010-11 Fulbright Fellow in Dhaka, Bangladesh, published this article in the March Forum magazine supplement of the Daily Star in Bangladesh. Read it