The International Living Future Institute commits to establishing JUST as a tool for transparency and social justice by recruiting 100 companies to participate in the program by the end of 2014. JUST is a new voluntary disclosure program designed to create a common language around social justice in the business world and provide a platform to help organizations evaluate and share their practices. The Institute believes that JUST's user-friendly platform and elegant 'nutrition label' format will empower both companies and consumers to become change agents for social justice.
Participation in JUST is open to any organization that has employees, including corporations, nonprofits, universities, and government agencies. In order to participate in this voluntary disclosure program an organization must submit in-depth information focused on twenty distinct aspects of workplace equity and justice.
The Institute developed the metrics for JUST after a thorough review of existing social justice initiatives and consultations with experts in the fields of social justice, diversity and equality, with a particular focus on organizational corporate workplace and operations. A few of the indicators addressed in the JUST platform are: Gender and ethnic diversity; Pay-scale equity; Opportunities for fulltime employment; Gender pay equity; Worker safety; Employer-provided health insurance; and Responsible investing.
Participating organizations will self-report on each JUST indicator, after which Institute staff will review for completeness and accuracy. The in-depth corporate information submitted for complete transparency will be public on the JUST website, while the easy-to-read JUST label will offer an informative snapshot to consumers interested in comparing organizations. The Institute will showcase each JUST label on its website, while participating organizations can feature the label on their website, marketing materials, project proposals, and any form of communications or outreach.
In order to ensure widespread participation in JUST, the Institute will leverage its extensive connections throughout the building and design industries and tap into its networks of influential business leaders, such as CGI and Ashoka.
August/September 2013: The Institute will continue recruiting organizations to help pilot the JUST program
Mid-September 2013: The Institute will complete an in-depth JUST user's manual.
Late September 2013:
- The Institute will officially launch its JUST metrics around the time of the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting The Institute will also create labels for several organizations that assisted with piloting the program, to present at the launch.
- The Institute will unveil the JUST website and public database.
- After the launch, the Institute will target 20 to 30 more companies in order to receive additional feedback on the metrics. Engaging with these additional organizations will also serve as a gateway into a broad base of industries.
November 2013: The Institute will integrate the lessons learned from JUST to inform the next version of the Living Building Challenge, particularly the Equity petal.
December 2014: The Institute will have labeled at least 100 companies through JUST and have collected enough feedback to begin rapidly scaling the program.
In today's global economy there is a lack of transparency surrounding social justice in supply side value chains. Even the most well intentioned consumers can get lost navigating the path needed to bring a product or idea to market, from manufacturing to end-of-life disposal. Often times, these value chains are rife with corruption and inequality, negatively impacting the communities involved.
The Rana Plaza Garment Factory collapse in Dhaka, Bangladesh earlier this year brought the issues of workers' rights to the forefront of media outlets across the world. Yet, while most people can agree that these rights should be universal, consumers often feel unable to make informed choices that reflect that belief. The consequences of purchasing decisions are not understood due to a lack of transparency surrounding how companies treat employees or where they invest profits. Further, the lack of a holistic, user friendly strategy for companies to evaluate and disclose their social justice practices makes changing the status quo even more difficult.
The International Living Future Institute (the Institute) is responding to this need for transparency in the marketplace and equality in the workplace through the JUST (Social Justice Label & Transparency) program. As a fully transparent self-reporting program, JUST provides an innovative platform for organizations to voluntarily reveal key information about their operations, including how they treat their employees and where they make financial and community investments. JUST builds on the Institute's other signature initiatives like the Living Building Challenge, the world's most advanced green building certification program, and the Declare materials transparency program, to advance social justice and equity in the built environment and beyond.