Happy New Year from RSN!
2017 was an exciting year both personally and professionally. We have so much exciting news going on, we just had to send you a big update. Not only did I celebrate a colorful wedding celebration over the summer, but RSN also had a breakthrough with its YESS initiative by attracting The Walt Disney Company as a major donor. We are now on our way to drafting and piloting a program to assess and verify slave-free cotton spinners!
We are proud and grateful to be in a position to implement a system that will not only assist companies in managing risk in their supply chains, but also make a profound difference on the ground for millions of exploited workers. Thank you for all your support in carrying out this transformative work.
We at RSN look forward to an impactful 2018 and send you best wishes for all of your endeavors.
With immense gratitude,
Disney Supports YESS!
RSN is proud to announce that The Walt Disney Company’s Supply Chain Investment Program has designated RSN’s YESS initiative as a 2017 grant recipient. RSN is thrilled to be one of a handful of organizations that has received funding this year. The Disney SCIP grant is allowing RSN to bring on consultant Liz Muller to assist in the research; to develop the protocol, guidance documents, and training materials; and to pilot the YESS program. RSN would like to express its thanks to The Walt Disney Company for bringing its energy and support to YESS.
Research Underway for the YESS Protocol
RSN Director Patricia Jurewicz, together with consultant Liz Muller had a busy 2017. During Q2 and Q3 they visited over a dozen spinning mills in India, Turkey, and Bangladesh. Coordinated with the help of H&M’s regional sourcing staffs, Patricia and Liz collected information on how spinners manage their cotton inventories, track specialty cottons, and record the waste and by-products that are created during production. The insight and knowledge gained helped us to draft a standard for RSN’s initiative YESS: Yarn Ethically & Sustainably Sourced. The public consultation period is now closed for our YESS Draft Standard, and we are in the process of collating and addressing comments. YESS will help drive the market away from cotton harvested with forced labor by training and verifying yarn spinners are only bringing cotton produced with responsible practices through their doors.
Fourth Annual Mining the Disclosures Published
Last October marked the fourth release of RSN’s evaluation of companies’ conflict minerals disclosures. The report included a deep analysis of over 200 companies and compared their 2017 scores to their 2016 scores. For over 80% of the companies, their scores decreased. Our research concluded that due to the constant pressure from our nation’s capital to deregulate section 1502, some companies minimized their conflict minerals’ actions and disclosures. One company, Walmart, chose not to disclose anything about its use of conflict minerals in 2017. Only the packaging and containers industry increased its average score. To see a sortable graph and table of companies’ scores, check out our online data visualization graphic.
Announcing the New and Improved RSN Website!
We at RSN are excited to have you all check out our updated website if you haven’t seen it lately. With the help of some outstanding volunteers and our own fabulous Communications and Operations teams, we upgraded to a beautiful new mobile-friendly home for RSN. We made it easier to find our key projects like YESS, Mining the Disclosures, and the Cotton Pledge. Please take a look and let us know what you think.
Textile Exchange Hosting a YESS Webinar January 18
After hosting a dessert table at Textile Exchange’s (TE) 15th annual conference, Patricia and Liz were invited to present a webinar on YESS’s Due Diligence program to TE’s members and others on January 18, 2018. The webinar is now available on our website. Please check it out to learn about the progress of YESS and how you and your supply chain partners can get involved.