Sustainability reporting, goodbye conspiracies

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Apple, that great manufacturer company of amazing devices aiming to improve the world…

According to a trustable source that I can not now unveil, during 2013 were evidenced at least the following breaches in the facilities of the Apple´s suppliers all around the world, mainly developing countries:

  • Six facilities conducted massive medical and pregnancy tests aiming to discriminate its workforces (men and women) for sexual or other protected conditions by human and labour rights;
  • 50 facilities did not provide regular free health exams to juvenile workers;
  • 106 facilities did not pay night shift workers the appropriate pay for legal holidays, even when the night shift spanned over two days;
  • 71 facilities underpaid overtime;
  • 105 facilities did not provide sufficient social insurance;
  • 14 facilities were found with excessive recruiting fees which are considered bonded labor;
  • 8 facilities were found with underage labor, with a total of 11 active cases and 12 historical cases; these facilities had insufficient controls to verify age or to detect false documentation, appearance verification, age identification, or fingerprint systems;
  • 209 facilities were found lacking approval or inspection reports or building certificates related to some aspect of fire safety, construction completion, or lightning prevention safety;
  • 157 facilities did not have proper licenses, permits, or certificates for at least one machinery operator;
  • 144 facilities had machines machine that lacked or had inadequate machine guarding;
  • 96 facilities lacked Lockout Tagout (LOTO) systems, which are an essential system for safety during equipment´start-up and maintenance;
  • At 90 facilities, there were instances where appropriate PPE (personal protective equipment)  were not provided to workers; At 98 facilities, PPE provided to the workers did not meet relevant standards;
  • 137 facilities lacked exit signs, emergency lighting, or evacuation route indicators, and 94 had insufficient signs, lighting, and routes ;
  • 115 facilities lacked regular monitoring, testing, or maintenance of fire protection systems;
  • 106 facilities had obstructed emergency exits or evacuation passages;
  • 129 facilities did not have smoke detectors in dormitory or dining sleeping rooms, public areas, or both;
  • 18 facilities provided falsified payroll or attendance records or were uncooperative in providing access to records;

Regarding the environment, my trustable source that I can´t unveil at the moment -I insist- says that…

  • 159 facilities were found without proper storage areas for hazardous waste and 96 facilities disposed of hazardous waste by unqualified vendors;
  • 120 facilities lacked or had inadequate monitoring or reports on emissions;
  • 104 facilities did not have Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) documentation, or it was incomplete;
  • 3 facilities released air emissions without treatment; 11 facilities discharged wastewater into pipes, drains, or directly into bodies of water without treatment; 2 facilities incorrectly disposed of hazardous waste.

In all, during 2013, in the facilities of Apple´s worldwide suppliers, there was more than 2.200 breaches of human and labor rights, safety and health at workplaces, environment and ethics.

This seems unacceptable for one of the best companies in the world, one of the firms called to change how thinks are made.

Now, you can hire a speaker with gloomy voice to read the data, edite harsh images to visualise the situations and insert sound and background disturbing effects, with this you almost have one of those touching research documentaries.

All that´s left now is an interview with the modified voice of a black shadow belonging to a member of the trustable source of information but, this is the point when all the project for the “research documentary of the year” breaks down as -this is the time to unveil it- the source of the data above comes from the own company, Apple, in its Supplier responsibility progress report.

Sustainability reports, goodbye conspiracy theories

Sustainability reports are documents disclosed by organizations conveying its most critical impacts –be they positive or negative– on the environment, society and the economy [1]. The reports are governed by standards, being the Global Reporting Initiative´s G4 one of the most renowned.

Within the sustainability strategy of the organizations, sustainability reports are a part of the communication with actors interested or influencing the  organizations´activities and revolve around a yearned concept: transparency.

Sustainability strategies have become one of the pillars of organizations management in the lasts years and experts predict that will reach a big development in the next ten years.

Apple is being releasing sustainability-related reports on its activities for almost one decade. Should you want to know on Apple´s sins, go to its responsibility reports.

Many other great companies are doing it too for a long time. But, in the current context, sustainability strategies will be a must not only for big corporations, but also by any organization aiming to grow properly in the globalised society and economy.

Source: Wikipedia

Sustainability reports bring huge advantages, but from the point of view of information control, they allow organizations to go a step forward any biased information from any actor, including the producers of some popular and touching research documentaries: a sustainability report within a good sustainability strategy is the worse think that may face your interested or influencer actors.

They will have to focus on other issues…

[1] GLOBAL REPORTING INITIATIVE. Introducción a la G4 - La nueva generación de memorias de sostenibilidad. Consulted 30 may 2014.
APPLE. Supplier responsibility progress report. January 2014. Consulted 30 may 2014.