Committee on Manufacturer Responsibility

Committee on Manufacturer Responsibility

Willamette University Anti-Sweatshop Code of Conduct

I. Introduction

Willamette University is committed to conducting its affairs in a socially responsible manner consistent with its religious and educational mission. Willamette University expects nothing less of its business partners. Therefore, Willamette University will not knowingly do business with those who engage in business practices or follow work place standards inconsistent with this Code of Conduct.

II. Principles

Willamette University firmly believes that workers in this country and abroad who help produce apparel bearing the insignia or name of Willamette University should be treated humanely and fairly and should work under healthy and safe conditions. The following provisions aim to meet these standards.

  • Manufacturers will comply with laws and regulations in all locations where they conduct business;
  • Manufacturers will pay at least the minimum total compensation required by local law, including all mandated wages, allowances and benefits;
  • Hours worked each day, and days worked each week, shall not exceed the legal limitations of the countries in which manufacture is conducted. Compensation beyond the prevailing rate of pay is provided for overtime work;
  • Manufacturers will not hire an employee of an age interfering with compulsory schooling, or under the minimum age established by law, whichever is greater;
  • Manufacturers will provide a safe and healthy working environment;
  • Manufacturers may not hire, pay, promote or terminate on the basis of gender, race, religion, age, disability, nationality, pregnancy, child birth or ethnic origin;
  • Prohibition of harassment, abuse or corporal punishment of employees;
  • Manufacturers shall recognize and respect the right of employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining.

III. Committee on Manufacturer Responsibility

Willamette University will establish a Committee on Manufacturer Responsibility to meet as needed.  It will be composed of four (4) students, two (2) faculty, and two (2) staff, including the purchasing agent for the University Bookstore.

The committee members shall serve as an advisory and auditing body for the University Bookstore's purchasing agents.

Bookstore Apparel Purchasing Agent Responsibilities

  • Bookstore apparel purchasing agents will ensure that all new vendors disclose the company names, owners and/or officers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and nature of the business association, of all the company's contractors, subcontractors, agents, and manufacturing plants which are involved in the manufacturing of WU emblematic apparel.
  • Bookstore purchasing agents should ask vendors to certify in writing that all of the contractors, subcontractors, agents and manufacturers involved in production of WU emblematic apparel have done so in accordance with WU’s Code of Conduct. 
  • Bookstore apparel purchasing agents will maintain a current list of manufacturers with which WU does business, the status of their compliance certification and any relevant records necessary to investigate and/or audit compliance to the Code of Conduct.
  • Bookstore apparel purchasing agents will actively seek out and utilize vendors whose manufacturers have instituted proactive mechanisms to insure production of WU emblematic goods is done in compliance with the WU Code of Conduct.
  • The bookstore apparel purchasing agent will, to the best of their abilities, research the manufacturers with which the college does business and keep abreast of relevant information regarding how goods are produced in order to recognize violations of WU’s Code of Conduct.  This research will include the entire supply chain involved in the production of WU emblematic apparel.
  • When research conducted by the purchasing agent reveals an alleged violation of Willamette's Code of Conduct, the purchasing agents will submit a formal complaint to the Committee for their review.

Committee Responsibilities and Process for Auditing Compliance with Code of Conduct

  • The Committee will convene to review alleged violations of WU's Code of Conduct.
  • The Committee will determine any alleged violations of WU’s Code of Conduct standards by reviewing independent documentation of abuses, discussing the case and weighing the circumstances of the violation(s) and the effort of the manufacturer to improve the conditions that led to the violation(s).  The intent of the Committee should be to encourage improvements of manufacturing conditions and not to punish manufacturers for unintentional violations.
  • After reviewing all available evidence, including the position of the manufacturer, the Committee will determine when excessive and continuous violations have been committed and recommend appropriate actions by Willamette University.  This recommendation will be submitted to the Vice President for Administrative Services for approval.
  • The Committee is further chartered to recommend actions that further promote the University's responsible purchase of apparel goods manufactured in accordance with the Code of Conduct.

IV. Formal Complaint Process

Willamette University is committed to insuring that the provisions of the Code of Conduct are followed.  To insure compliance, Willamette community members wishing to register a formal complaint against an apparel provider are required to submit their allegations in writing to the Director of the Willamette Store.  All complaints will be forwarded to the CMR for their review.

V. Public Disclosure

Willamette University believes that members of this community, and consumers of Willamette University emblematic apparel, should know that these goods are manufactured in compliance with the Code of Conduct.  Members of the Willamette University Community may request minutes of the meetings of the Committee on Manufacturer Responsibility and records regarding the compliance of Willamette University apparel vendors and their contractors, subcontractors, agents, and manufacturing plants to the Willamette University Code of Conduct.

VI. Amendments

Amendments to the Anti-Sweatshop Code of Conduct shall be approved by the Vice President of Administrative Services. 

Revised 9/09