GoodWeave commits to raising the global market share of certified child-labor-free rugs from 4.5 to 6.5 percent by September 2016, enabling GoodWeave to protect more children with every uptick in market share. Implementation will focus on five interventions along the supply chain, from consumer demand to prevention:
The centerpiece of the commitment is a consumer awareness campaign to persuade rug buyers and interior designers to demand the GoodWeave label. GoodWeave aims to reach 45 million new consumers by 2016 via advertising, media, trade and designer outreach, in-store promotions, online communications, and video. Complementing this increase in demand, GoodWeave will secure partnerships with 30 companies newly dedicated to sourcing and selling certified rugs. This will increase the number of licensees selling goods through thousands of retail outlets from 120 to 150 by 2016.
On the producers' side, GoodWeave will expand its supply chain monitoring and certification activities in India and Afghanistan, and complete a new market entry strategy for China within the next three years. Importers who join GoodWeave open their supply chains in India, Nepal, and Afghanistan for unannounced inspections following best-in-class protocol. Companies that meet the standard are issued labels that can be traced to the production site. When, during these inspections, children are found working, they are offered counseling, medical treatment, education, and a home. Child Protection policies guide in-country staff on victim assistance. Through this commitment, GoodWeave anticipates emancipating and educating 1,500 child laborers.
By its very existence, GoodWeave deters and prevents unscrupulous producers. GoodWeave also invests in daycare and school sponsorship for at-risk children (supporting 11,000 to date in academic pursuits), workers' health and safety initiatives, and community awareness programs. Through this commitment, 17,052 will be reached via prevention strategies.
Today, GoodWeave is the certification standard tackling modern slavery. It will dedicate its 10-person Washington team, 35 global staff members, 120 licensees, nine media sponsors, and major funders to this commitment.
While the approach presents the full GoodWeave operational system, the action plan zeroes in on three pivotal steps: consumer campaigning to reach 45 million new consumers, business engagement to reach 6.5 percent market share, and supply chain monitoring/certification expansion in India, Afghanistan, and likely China.
Year One (September 2013-September 2014)
- Build and expand media partnerships to secure public service announcements (PSAs) (ongoing)
- Hire Public Relations (PR) firm/consultants to help secure major earned media coverage in targeted home and business publications in North America and Europe, respectively (ongoing)
- Recruit social media strategist to leverage the debut of new consumer-facing video short to be played in retail outlets and showrooms as well as reach audiences virally
- Increase global market share of certified rugs from 4.5 to 5percent
- Secure partnerships with 10 new companies in North America and Europe
- Establish a presence at premier industry tradeshows (ongoing)
- Develop individualized business case statements for medium to large prospects who are industry influencers (ongoing)
- Hire a new Partnership Engagement Manager to support licensee co-branding, GoodWeave presence at tradeshows, and other sales activities
Supply Chain Monitoring + Certification
- Hire a new inspector to increase Indian supply chain coverage in Rajasthan
- Arrange field visits for carpet company CEOs to GoodWeave programs in Uttar Pradesh (ongoing)
- Conduct a feasibility study for China
- Provide and expand victim assistance commensurate with supply chain coverage expansion (ongoing)
Year Two (October 2014-September 2015)
- Expand media partnerships in Europe (ongoing)
- Establish regional PR office in London
- Launch new global marketing website (ongoing)
- Increase market share to 5.5 percent in 2015
- Secure 10 new importer licensees
- Hire business development staff at U.S. headquarters
Supply Chain Monitoring
- Build capacity in Afghanistan and open Herat regional office (ongoing)
- Hire new inspector in India (Rajasthan)
- Secure two new partner companies with high import volume from India
- Build infrastructure for China inspections system
Year Three (October 2015 - September 2016)
- Establish regional office in Germany (ongoing)
- Increase market share to 6.5 percent
- Secure 10 new importer licensees
Supply Chain Monitoring
- Launch pilot audits in China
- Continue Afghan and Indian inspection + monitoring expansion to meet market demand
From the garment factories of Bangladesh to the cocoa fields of the Ivory Coast, there are 215 million child laborers today. That's one out of every seven children around the world. In 2012, the International Labor Organization (ILO) released its estimate that 21 million people exist in states of bonded labor or slavery, a quarter of whom are children.
Despite laws prohibiting child labor, the practice is rampant in Asia's rug industry. An estimated 250,000 children in India and Nepal alone are exploited to make rugs for export to North America and Europe. In recent Congressional testimony Siddharth Kara, author of 'Bonded Labor' and Harvard expert, stated, '
that at least one-third of carpets imported into the U.S. from India and Nepal are tainted by forced labor, child labor, or bonded labor.'
These 'carpet kids' range in age from four to 14, and are trafficked, sold, or otherwise forced to work as many as 18 hours a day. They are subject to malnutrition, impaired vision, deformities from sitting long hours in cramped loom sheds, respiratory diseases from inhaling wool fibers, and wounds from using sharp tools. They are often punished or beaten for not meeting daily weaving quotas. Those working as bonded laborers have no chance to earn their freedom and frequently earn little or no money. This is modern slavery.
To transition the remaining "carpet kids" to classrooms, GoodWeave seeks first and foremost implementing partners, specifically rug importers and retailers to join the certification program and ensure their product is made by adults under fair conditions. After business relationships, GoodWeave is eager to find new philanthropic partners who would be interested in underwriting expansion to new regions and sectors. Right now, GoodWeave is assessing the feasibility of opening a new office in China and also replicating its program in India's garment industry. Finally, GoodWeave relies on media sponsors to help reach high-end consumers interested in design and furnishings; this is accomplished largely through donating ad space for the organization's PSA.