Strong brand commitment to Social & Labor Convergence Program (SLCP) is driving battle against audit fatigue.

34 leading brands, retailers and organizations publicly state their acceptance of SLCP verified assessments in place of their proprietary audit schemes, creating a reduction in unnecessary audits in their supply chains.

Amsterdam (October 29 2020): The Social & Labor Convergence Program today revealed a growing list of leading brands, retailers and organizations that now accept SLCP verified assessments instead of conducting their own social audits on suppliers, demonstrating real progress towards SLCP’s goal of reducing the audit burden on manufacturers & freeing up resources to improve working conditions.

SLCP is a multi-stakeholder initiative made up of over 200 signatories. This includes some of the world’s leading manufacturers, brands, retailers, industry groups, international and governmental organizations, service providers and civil society groups. SLCP signatories collectively developed the Converged Assessment Framework (CAF) to replace the multitude of repetitive and duplicative social & labor audits with one single, high-quality tool.

SLCP officially launched the Converged Assessment Framework in June 2019 and has gradually expanded operations to include key production countries globally over the last year. SLCP is scaling rapidly: it is now active in over 30 countries and, so far, over 1000 facilities have completed an SLCP verified assessment.

Having successfully integrated SLCP into their internal processes, 34 brands, retailers and organizations are now publicly stating that they will accept SLCP verified data instead of conducting their own proprietary audits . Other SLCP signatory brands and standard holders are in the process of

adapting their systems with a view to accepting SLCP verified data in the near future. In addition to 33 individual brands and retailers, the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), which includes more than 250 members, is also included on the list of organizations that accept SLCP, having fully integrated the Converged Assessment Framework as the backbone of their Facility Social & Labor Tool (Higg FSLM).

Brands and stakeholders (e.g. standard holders) are supported in using SLCP verified data by SLCP’s Accredited Hosts: FFC, Higg Co and Inspectorio; all of whom offer value-added services to interpret, analyze or score the SLCP verified data. For example, earlier this month the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) and Higg Co launched a scored version of the Higg FSLM to provide consistent measurement of social and labor data for all SAC members and Higg users.

With the world still in the grips of a global pandemic which continues to disrupt supply chains and severely impact the lives of workers, never has the need for industry collaboration, efficiency, and reliable social & labor data been stronger. SLCP enables widespread sharing of one single verified assessment, eliminating the need for each buyer to conduct their own audit on a supplier. This decreases costs for brands and manufacturers alike and reduces the practical barriers of multiple auditors visiting a facility while access may be restricted due to COVID-19. SLCP’s robust verification methodology and verification oversight mechanism ensures each assessment is consistently verified to a high standard by an experienced SLCP approved Verifier.

Marissa Pagnani McGowan, Senior Vice President of Corporate Responsibility at PVH Corp said: “SLCP provides a robust and standardized approach to measuring and improving social and labor metrics across the apparel sector. The adoption of this collaborative and consistent industry-wide tool frees up valuable time and resources for our suppliers, enabling us to work more productively together to scale positive impacts across the supply chain.”

Monica Gorman, Vice President of Responsible Leadership & Global Compliance at New Balance said: “At New Balance, we believe in the power of collaboration between stakeholders to address industry challenges. By working toward a unified assessment tool, such as SLCP, we seek to reduce duplicative auditing, align actions, and refocus resources towards efforts that will most improve the lives of workers.”

Srinivasa Rao Venkatesh, Chief Compliance Officer at Shahi Exports, said: “The increasing list of brands adopting SLCP in place of traditional audits empowers suppliers to reduce audit fatigue, streamline compliance processes, and use resources towards worker wellbeing. We strongly support brands and suppliers adopting SLCP to drive convergence within the industry globally.”

Rae Eun SUNG, President of Youngone Corporation, said “Being a manufacturer operating in multiple countries serving renowned brands and retailers, we care deeply about the communities where we work and live. As a signatory of the SLCP, we are excited about the progress that has been made collectively, and remain committed to working proactively with our like-minded customers in achieving the mission of the SLCP.”

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