STRATEGIC PARTNERS PROGRAM

Our partnerships with progressive global brands and retailers are focused on empowered worker voice, data and analytics, and a collaborative approach to operationalize ethical supply chains.  Our model has yielded groundbreaking results in terms of labour risks identified and mitigated, system improvements, and remediation - in the seafood, petcare, agriculture, poultry, apparel and footwear, and electronics industries.  Technologies developed in-house - such as the Golden Dreams smartphone app - have helped amplify worker voice to drive remediation, supplier improvements, and industry reform, through a system we call Inclusive Labour Monitoring (ILM).  Trust built with workers, suppliers, and recruiters alike has allowed for safeguarded, large-scale remediation and surveys that have revealed both labour risks and good employer practices as validated by workers, and led to repayment of recruitment fees and owed wages and benefits.

One of the keys to the Issara Strategic Partners and ILM is the fundamental focus on systems strengthening and harm prevention, balanced with remediation.  When labour issues are found, they are remediated, but the root causes are focused on and worked on by the Issara team, suppliers, and recruiters, to prevent future harm and ensure decent recruitment and working conditions for all.

Successful kick-off meeting with a supplier
Successful kick-off meeting with a supplier

Kick-off meetings include discussions with factory management and HR, as well as outreach and education activities with workers.

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Factory visit
Factory visit

Factory visits allow our team to understand better how the factory works, including processes and equipment that may be referred to by workers who call.

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Recruitment fee survey prep
Recruitment fee survey prep

For companies interested in ethical recruitment, it is important for workers to understand exactly what their rights are with regard to recruitment fees, and who is asking such sensitive questions. Once understanding and trust is built, workers can feel safe reporting their experiences accurately.

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Successful kick-off meeting with a supplier
Successful kick-off meeting with a supplier

Kick-off meetings include discussions with factory management and HR, as well as outreach and education activities with workers.

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Guiding principles and operational standards

Issara Institute is a non-profit organization, with clear human rights fundamentals underpinning all of our work. 

These Guiding Principles and Operational Standards for the Issara Strategic Partners Program provide a framework for all partners and our work together, around:

  • Empowered Worker Voice

  • Shared Responsibility

  • Right to Remediation

  • Right to Protection

  • Ethics and Human Rights at the Forefront

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THE MECHANICS OF REMEDIATION

The recruitment and labour issues and risks that exist in a supply chain should be verified by workers, as the people who directly experience these issues and are vulnerable to these risks.  And similarly, whether and how these issues are resolved and remediated should also be verified by workers: workers should have a channel to report issues and questions in the months following remediation, since risks of retaliation do not simply end after the auditor leaves the premises or the ethical consultancy ends its contract.

These reports provide critical worker voice-centered insight into the realities of remediation, both of workplace-based issues as well as of exploitative recruitment-based issues.

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