Anti-Sweatshop Advisory Committee Meeting
May 30, 2006
USAS Designated Supplier Proposal.
- The University of Colorado has joined the DSP Working Group, although the administrators there show luke-warm suppor for the proposal. The University of California system has also joined.
- Committee Chair Dick McKaig reported that he had participated in about half of the most recent Working Group meeting via teleconference (May 23). He said that the WRC and Baker & Miller PLLC (legal consultants) are moving forward with the process of requesting a “business letter of review” from the US Justice Department to quell any question of anti-trust violation which may come up as a result of DSP implementation. The draft implementation plan was discussed in detail.
Letter Regarding Hermosa & Chi Fung Factories.
We discussed the letter that we had decided to send to licensees of these two factories in El Salvador, and Isabel agreed to make revisions based on the latest report from the WRC.
Support for Improved Factories.
- Jenny McDaniel reported that she had spoken with the relevant person at the IU Bookstore about placing orders directly with Just Garments to keep that business, which has improved its code of conduct compliance but is losing orders, afloat. Katie and Phil of No Sweat! had agreed to follow up with the Bookstore, but they did not attend the meeting to provide an update.
- Dick said he had not had a chance to send the letter we drafted for President Herbert to sign to the president’s office, but that he would do so this week. This is the letter that asks licensees to direct orders to factories where there has been significant code of conduct compliance improvement, but where orders have dropped down to a dangerous level. We edited the list of factories based on the latest WRC report.
WRC Factory Reports.
We reviewed the WRC report on Gildan Activewear factories in Honduras. The Gildan El Progreso factory was closed in Sept. 2004 to squelch union activity, and in Jan. 2005 Gildan agreed to rehire El Progreso workers on a preferential basis at its other Honduran factories to make up for this violation of licensee codes of conduct. Gildan’s compliance with the agreement has had mixed reviews by the WRC, who will continue to monitor the situation.
We did not set another meeting date since we were not sure when the next DSP Working Group meeting would be.