It is necessary to follow all the safety measures while you are in the manufacturing business be it textile, engineering, leather or any industry. Let’s take the example of the leather industry, where leather products are mass manufactured, be it leather shoes, leather safety gloves or other leather safety equipment. To ensure the quality of these safety products, the industries comply with quality assurance bodies, and it also helps to position the brand in consumers’ minds. Elite leather company among many others companies strictly compliant with the WRAP principles and certified from concerning bodies.
There are different certifications local and international which helps to keep a check on the quality of the production and inspects complete manufacturing process. We will specifically discuss one of the international certifications with principles and benefits, which covers complete work ethics and provides a safe environment in production companies.
WRAP Certification – Principles and Benefits
What is WRAP?
The WRAP stands for Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production. WRAP certification is the largest factory-based certification program in the world for manufacturers of footwear, clothing and other sewn products. The WRAP certification audit inspects the entire production process to ensure that the factory is compliant with the 12 WRAP Principles and assure the consumer that these products are ethically produced as they ensure safe, ethical and legal manufacturing processes.
The 12 WRAP Principles:
The WRAP Principles are made on internationally accepted workplace standards, regulations and local workplace laws, and it also include the spirit of all the relevant conventions of the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, International Labor Organization (ILO), and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) guidelines for Multinational Enterprises.
These principles surround human resources management, safety and health, legal compliance that includes both import and export and customs with security standards. The principles and product certification ensure and promote responsible business practices, with sustainability of supply chain management. Following are the principles that provides safe and healthy production environment:
1- Prohibition of forced labor
2- Compliance with laws and workplace regulations
3- Prohibition of harassment or abuse
4- Prohibition of child labor
5- Hours of work as limited by law
6- Compensation and benefits as required by law
7- Prohibition of discrimination
8- Freedom of association and collective bargaining
9- Health and safety
10- Customs compliance
Benefits of having WRAP Certifications
- It benefits to strengthen the relationship with customers
- It will meet pre-qualification requirement of US based retail stores for new business
- It is compliant with international and national regulations
- It opens new business opportunities from international clients
- It encourages ethical trading program
- It improves social performance
- It ensures safety of workers
- It improves the reporting structure
- It is acceptable for international organizations
- It gives waiver against customers’ code of conduct audit
- It gives consistent outcome, measure and monitored
- It improves the traceability
- It helps to build relation with customers
- It helps to maintain relationship with existing customers
- It is helpful to attract new customers
- Its standard is globally accepted
12 Principles of WRAP Certification:
1. Prohibition of Forced Labor
Under this rule, the facilities or companies will not use forced or involuntary labor. The facilities have to ensure that the hiring of the labors are done under proper contract and have complete relevant legal requirements fulfilled, and all written contracts are in a language understood by the workers. Employees’ travel documents shouldn’t be held, and they should not be employed subject to any debt security or collateral guarantee.
2. Compliance with Laws and Workplace Regulations
The location where the facilities doing business, they are bound to comply with laws and regulations of that place. The company has to fulfil all the legal requirements under the international and local laws.
3. Prohibition of Harassment and Abuse
This will ensure a respectful workplace for the labors and ensure their rights and dignity. This will also assure that no physical punishment or corporal coercion be used. Any sort of sexual harassment, threatening gesture or indecent behavior will not be tolerated.
4. Prohibition of Child Labor
In less developed countries, the minimum age for employment is 14+ whereas in developed countries the age limit is 15 years. Under this rule, the compulsory education of the child should not interfere with employment. Also, the facility will comply with legal restrictions on the nature and volume of work done by the young workers.
5. Hours of Work
The hours of work for each day and days for each month should not be more than the set limitation of the country’s law. The company ensures one day off every week, except to meet any urgent business requirement. As this can be a bit challenging requirement, when taking into account local laws, and customs, WRAP will permit compliance with local bodies on working hours to be increased with incentives.
6. Compensation and Benefits
The companies should pay the minimum set wages and compensation required by the local bodies, that includes benefits and allowances.
This will also ensure the payments for any overtime work or work done during holidays.
7. Health & Safety
The companies will ensure a safe and healthy environment, and where the residential housing is provided, the facilities will ensure it is healthy and safe. The availability of clean drinking water, medical resources, and safety equipment should be ensured.
8. Prohibition of Discrimination
The facilities will only pay, promote or terminate workers solely on the basis of the performance rather than on the basis of the personal beliefs or characteristics. The company should ensure strict policies for employment decision that involves hiring, assigning work, promotion is made without discrimination on the basis of color, caste, national origin, gender or religion.
The facilities should take account for ensuring the environmental conscious practices where they operate the business. Proper rules and regulations should be implemented for the safe and healthy environment.
10. Freedom of Association & Collective Bargaining
Facilities will give complete freedom to the employees to exercise their rights of free association and collective bargaining, and also they will have complete freedom to join any workers’ association. The company will not discriminate against workers based on their choice of joining the association.
The companies will ensure a safe and secure environment for the employees. Facilities will provide complete security be it workplace, transportation or physical security.
12. Customs Compliance
Custom laws are compulsory and facilities will ensure to establish and maintain programs that comply with custom laws. And it also ensures that all the shipment is marked in compliance with all the laws.
The WRAP certification greatly helps to promote a safe and healthy work environment for the employees, and for the employers also. To keep the workflow smooth and day to day tasks hassle-free, such certification and governing bodies helps to discipline the business environment.