BSCI welcomed over 300 participants and stakeholders at its Annual Conference in Brussels on 12 and 13 November. Sessions on 12 November were designed for BSCI participants only, to share and discuss the implications for them in implementing the new Code of Conduct launched in January 2014. BSCI's Steering Committee Chair, Bernardo Cruza, shared a review of the last year's activities and the results of the BSCI Brainstorming Survey. Also on 12 November, Mr. Christian Ewert was announced as the new Director General of the Foreign Trade Association (FTA), of which BSCI is the initiative supporting improved working conditions. Mr. Ewert will take up this role from Jan Eggert as of 1 December.
On 13 November the conference opened its doors to external stakeholders. Headlined by Prof. John Ruggie, former UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Business and Human Rights, the sessions on this day shared best practices and innovative approaches to building more sustainable supply chains. Bernardo Cruza, BSCI Steering Committee Chair states that “As stressed by Prof. Ruggie, we need to drive a shift in mindset from audit-based regimes to a comprehensive approach focused on continuous improvement, root cause analysis and momentous partnerships. Systemic issues require innovative and collaborative approaches from all actors, and together, BSCI participants have leverage and the right tools at hand to lead this change.”
The Annual Conference was designed to explore ways to move beyond compliance to a holistic and inclusive framework that empowers all actors to take ownership of the labour challenges in their supply chain.
Speakers representing business, trade unions, NGOs and academics took part in high-level debates on hot topics such as supply chain transparency, and moving beyond compliance. Panel debates and breakout sessions focused on concrete solutions such as tools to address grievance mechanisms, best practices for effective collaboration, ways to handle fair remuneration as well as tackling child labour, protecting young workers and identifying corruption risks in global supply chains. An overview of the outcomes from the different sessions plus video summaries will be soon available on the conference website.
To read the full press release, click here.
Contact: Stephanie Luong, FTA Head of Communications