Kanekta Ethical Standards

Though Kanekta cannot and does not guarantee the practices of any of our users, Kanekta requires that all brands using our platform commit to their products being ethically-sourced.

We define ethical sourcing as ensuring that the products being sourced are created in safe facilities by workers who are treated well and paid fair wages to work legal hours. Ethical sourcing also means respecting the environment during the production and manufacture of the products.

1. Third-Party Certified Brands

Kanekta does not limit use of our platform solely to brands that have sought third-party certifications. If the brand’s operations have already been vetted by a third-party certifier, Kanekta will trust that their processes constitute ethical sourcing. We require the brand to provide Kanekta with the documents associated with the certification upon request. However, Kanekta still reserves the right to question the brand about items relating to standards stated below as well as conduct site visits during a time agreed upon by both parties.

2. Uncertified Brands

Given that Kanekta works with brands of different sizes, we recognize that a brand which is smaller in size and scope is limited in their ability to be formally certified by another party. In these situations, to ensure the credibility of a brand’s ethical sourcing claims, we will perform our own due diligence. Kanekta will vet each brand using a Self-Assessment Report (SAR) on a continual, yearly basis. Brands agree to disclose all information required for Kanekta to conduct the assessment.

3. Scope and Limitations of the Ethical Standards

The provisions of the below terms constitute minimum and not maximum standards, and this should not be used to prevent companies from exceeding these standards. Kanekta understands that no brand is perfect. We place a high value on a brand’s genuine determination to improve its policies, procedures, and processes. Kanekta will work with brands like these on a case-by-case basis.

4. Violation

If at any time Kanekta finds the brand to have materially breached any of the conditions below or submitted fraudulent reports, Kaneka reserves the right to terminate the partnership and inform all parties involved in the transaction of the violation.

5. Criteria

Kanekta vets based on the following criteria:

    a) Forced Labor
      1. There is no forced, bonded, or involuntary prison labour.
      2. Workers are free to leave their employer with reasonable notice.

    b) Child Labor
      1. There shall be no new recruitment of child labour.
      2. Companies shall develop or participate in and contribute to policies and programmes which provide for the transition of any child found to be performing child labour to enable her or him to attend and remain in quality education until no longer a child.

    c) Freedom of Association & Collective Bargaining
      1. All workers have the right to join or form trade unions of their own choosing and to bargain collectively.
      2. The employer adopts an open attitude towards the activities of trade unions and their organisational activities.
      3. Workers representatives are not discriminated against and have access to carry out their representative functions in the workplace.
      4. Where the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining is restricted under law, the employer facilitates, and does not hinder, the development of parallel means for independent and free association and bargaining.

    d) Health & Safety
      1. A safe and hygienic working environment shall be provided, bearing in mind the prevailing knowledge of the industry and of any specific hazards.
      2. Adequate steps shall be taken to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, associated with, or occurring in the course of work, by minimising, so far as is reasonably practicable, the causes of hazards inherent in the working environment.
      3. Workers shall receive regular and recorded health and safety training, and such training shall be repeated for new or reassigned workers.
      4. Access to clean toilet facilities and to potable water, and, if appropriate, sanitary facilities for food storage shall be provided.
      5. Accommodation, where provided, shall be clean, safe, and meet the basic needs of the workers.
      6. The company observing the code shall assign responsibility for health and safety to a representative of the organization.

    e) Wages & Benefits
      1. Wages and benefits paid for a standard working week meet, at a minimum, national legal standards or industry benchmark standards, whichever is higher. In any event, wages should always be enough to meet basic needs and to provide some discretionary income. 2. All workers shall be provided with written and understandable information about their employment conditions in respect to wages before they enter employment and about the particulars of their wages for the pay period concerned each time that they are paid. 3. Deductions from wages as a disciplinary measure shall not be permitted nor shall any deductions from wages not provided for by national law be permitted without the expressed permission of the worker concerned. All disciplinary measures should be recorded.

    f) Working Hours
      1. Working hours must comply with national laws, collective agreements, and the provisions below, whichever affords the greater protection for workers.
      2. Working hours, excluding overtime, shall be defined by contract, and shall not exceed 48 hours per week.*
      3. All overtime shall be voluntary. Overtime shall be used responsibly, taking into account all the following: the extent, frequency and hours worked by individual workers and the workforce as a whole. It shall not be used to replace regular employment. Overtime shall always be compensated at a premium rate, which is recommended to be not less than 125% of the regular rate of pay.
      4. The total hours worked in any 7-day period shall not exceed 60 hours, except where covered by clause “5” below.
      5. Working hours may exceed 60 hours in any 7-day period only in exceptional circumstances where all the following are met:
        · This is allowed by national law;
        · This is allowed by a collective agreement freely negotiated with a workers’ organisation representing a significant portion of the workforce;
        · Appropriate safeguards are taken to protect the workers’ health and safety; and
        · The employer can demonstrate that exceptional circumstances apply such as unexpected production peaks, accidents or emergencies.
      6. Workers shall be provided with at least one day off in every 7-day period or, where allowed by national law, 2 days off in every 14-day period*

    *International standards recommend the progressive reduction of normal hours of work, when appropriate, to 40 hours per week, without any reduction in workers’ wages.

    g) Non-Discrimination
      1. There is no discrimination in hiring, compensation, access to training, promotion, termination or retirement based on race, caste, national origin, religion, age, disability, gender, marital status, sexual orientation, union membership or political affiliation.

    h) Legally-Binding Employee Relationship
      1. To every extent possible work performed must be on the basis of recognised employment relationship established through national law and practice.
      2. Obligations to employees under labour or social security laws and regulations arising from the regular employment relationship shall not be avoided through the use of labour-only contracting, sub- contracting, or home-working arrangements, or through apprenticeship schemes where there is no real intent to impart skills or provide regular employment, nor shall any such obligations be avoided through the excessive use of fixed-term contracts of employment.

    i) Disciplinary Practices
      1. Physical abuse or discipline, the threat of physical abuse, sexual or other harassment and verbal abuse or other forms of intimidation shall be prohibited.

    j) Women’s Rights
      1. Equal remuneration is provided for female workers.
      2. Pregnancy tests are not allowed for hiring, firing, or promotion practices.
      3. Maternity leave shall not be shorter than eight weeks on full pay, not including annual leave. After returning to work, breastfeeding breaks during work time must be granted.
      4. Wage deduction or dismissals of workers on maternity leave are prohibited. Upon their return, workers will have the same positions as prior to their leave, with same or equivalent pay and benefits.
      5. There is no pressure on workers to use contraception.
      6. Management provides appropriate services and accommodation to pregnant workers and ensures they are given work which does not risk the health of the women or children they are carrying.

    k) Respect for the Environment
      1. All chemicals are stored, used, and disposed of in such a way as to minimize potential risk and exposure to workers, the environment and the products being manufactured.
      2. Facilities have an environmental commitment and put forth efforts to protect and restore the natural environment. At a minimum, all local legal requirements are adhered to. There is a continuous effort to improve environmental performance along a defined path towards cleaner production.

    l) Sourcing of Production Materials
      1. There is a continuous effort to source all raw materials from outlets that follow the same ethical standards as stated above.

    m) Transparency and Accountability
      1. Engage in continuous communication and the sharing of information between all relevant stakeholders including but not limited to your organization, employees, partners and most importantly your suppliers.

Last updated June 27, 2017