When you think product safety and compliance, you likely first think about the processes used to make those products, and the facilities in which those products are made. But the human element- the people who make the products-is why the QCA Accreditation process also includes parameters and best practices designed to improve social compliance expectations.

In today’s manufacturing industry, social accountability generally refers to the environment in which an item was manufactured as it pertains to labor. These programs are usually referred to as labor standards or ethical manufacturing programs. Frequently, social accountability policies are designed to ensure minimum protections are provided to workers.

Because social accountability and compliance is so important, it’s monitored and measured by a range of global, national and local organizations, including UN-sponsored groups, trade organizations, the Department of Labor, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and local fire districts, among others.

QCA Accredited companies have policies, procedures and protocols that effectively address local and national laws as related to labor compliance in their facilities. QCA Accredited companies also maintain an ethical manufacturing policy that assures these guarantees extend to the workforce that’s involved in the importing on behalf of the Accredited company. This is validated through audits conducted based on the principles embodied under the UN Global Compact.

For more information on social compliance and how it relates to QCA Accreditation, including best practices, human rights and QCA monitoring standards, take a look at a white paper written by QCA Executive Director—Compliance, D. Fenton, entitled “Measuring And Defining Labor Rights Compliance In Manufacturing.”