Carnegie Mellon, PA University Code of Workplace Conduct for Trademark Licensees

From Green Policy
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Carnegie Mellon, PA, US

Loading map...

Type: Policy

Status: Adopted on 4/12/02

Source File:


Carnegie Mellon University is committed to conducting its business affairs in a socially responsible manner consistent with its Strategic Plan. The plan recognizes that the University’s responsibilities extend beyond the confines of the campus: “Through our education, research and creative expression, the university relates to an unusual extent to the world beyond our campus. Our activities have impact by creating knowledge, improving the quality of life, enhancing culture, and advancing economic and environmental sustainability.”

Carnegie Mellon thus values the welfare of the diverse people who help to manufacture the products that contain our brand image and trademarks. Carnegie Mellon condemns the use of sweatshop labor in the manufacturing of any product that bears the trademarks of this institution; therefore, Carnegie Mellon has written the following Code of Conduct that establishes minimum standards for its trademark licensees. Carnegie Mellon will select only those licensees who will conduct their business in a manner consistent with this Code of Conduct and who will commit to following its standards.

Carnegie Mellon acknowledges that the adoption of a code of conduct by a single university will not immediately abolish the use of sweatshop labor at home and/or abroad; however, we do believe that collectively, institutions of higher education and our licensee partners will make a difference. The reputations of higher education, trademark management and licensing offices, manufacturers, trade associations, retailers, government agencies and licensees are impacted by their position on sweatshop abolishment.

Carnegie Mellon believes that employees have a right to earn wages that enable them to meet their basic needs, including housing, energy, nutrition, clothing, healthcare, education, potable water, childcare, and transportation. Although the concept of a “living wage” is not as yet an internationally recognized standard, we strongly urge licensees to pay wages that cover basic material needs, particularly when licensees operate in jurisdictions where minimum wage laws do not exist, are not enforced, or clearly fail to meet basic needs.

Carnegie Mellon recognizes that workers are also members of local communities and therefore expect that licensees will be accountable to the communities in which they conduct their operations. We therefore expect that trademark licensees, in addition to complying with the code that follows, will also consider ecological impacts from the production and life cycle of their products. In their use of resources, a licensee should consider long-range outcomes and compensate local communities for any degradation of the natural environment. Licensees should minimize and strive to eliminate the release of any pollutant that may cause environmental damage to air, water, or land or its inhabitants.

Licensees are encouraged to respect the cultural traditions of the communities in which they conduct operations. This should include recognizing cultural and religious holidays where appropriate and acknowledgment of indigenous cultural architecture, environment and language.

Licensees are encouraged to work with local communities to create economic diversity by decreasing the reliance on a single production economy where applicable.

This Code of Conduct shall apply to all trademark licensees of Carnegie Mellon. Throughout this Code of Conduct the term “licensee” shall include all persons or entities who have entered into a written Trademark Licensing Agreement with Carnegie Mellon to manufacture products bearing the name, trademarks and/or images of Carnegie Mellon.

“Licensee” shall also include the licensee’s contractors, subcontractors, vendors, manufacturers, sub-licensees and any related entities throughout the world engaged in the manufacturing process that results in a finished licensed product for the consumer. “Manufacturing process” shall include assembly and packaging.

As a condition of being permitted to produce and/or sell licensed products bearing the name, trademarks and/or images of Carnegie Mellon, each licensee must comply with the “Standards” in this Code of Conduct and also ensure that its contractors comply with the Code of Conduct's standards. This Code constitutes a new requirement for licensees pursuant to the terms in the Licensing Agreement. Accordingly, all licensees and contractors are required to agree in writing to this new provision and to adhere to this Code’s standards within 6 months from the date of execution of the licensing agreement.

If Carnegie Mellon determines that any licensee has failed to remedy a violation of this Code, Carnegie Mellon will consult with the licensee to examine the issues and determine the appropriate measures to be taken. At minimum, the remedy will include taking steps necessary to correct such violations. If consultation and agreed upon measures fail to adequately resolve the violations within a specified time period, then Carnegie Mellon and the licensee will implement a corrective action plan on terms acceptable to Carnegie Mellon.

Carnegie Mellon seeks licensees who take a leadership role on these issues and, to the extent practical, exceeds the standards in this Code. Carnegie Mellon licensees must operate work places, and ensure that their contractors operate work places, that adhere to the following minimum standards and practices:

1. Labor

Forced Labor
There shall not be any use of forced labor, whether in the form of prison labor, indentured labor, bonded labor or otherwise.

Non-discrimination Policy
No person shall be subject to any discrimination in employment, including hiring, salary, benefits, advancement, discipline, termination or retirement, on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, creed, ancestry, belief, political opinion, age, sex, sexual orientation, veteran status, handicap, social or ethnic origin, or of any other attribute, which would be in violation of applicable laws.

Child Labor
Licensees shall not employ any person at an age younger than 15 (or 14, where consistent with International Labor Organization practices for developing countries where the law of the country of manufacture allows such exception). Where the age for completing compulsory education is higher than the standard for the minimum age of employment stated above, the higher age for completing compulsory education shall apply to this section. Licensees agree to consult with governmental, human rights, and non-governmental organizations, and to take reasonable steps as evaluated by the University to minimize the negative impact on children released from employment as a result of implementation or enforcement of the Code.

2. Basic Human Rights

Collective Bargaining
Licensees shall respect the right of employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining. No employee shall be subject to harassment, intimidation or retaliation in their efforts to freely associate or bargain collectively.

Freedom to Communicate
No employee shall be subject to harassment, intimidation or retaliation for exercising the right of free speech pertaining to employee’s interests. Employers/Licensees shall recognize that it is the right of employees to be free to communicate with outside non-government organizations (NGO’s).

Special Consideration for Women
Carnegie Mellon, recognizing that women form a majority of the garment industry workers, further expects that:

a) Women workers will receive equal remuneration, including benefits, equal treatment, equal evaluation of the quality of their work and equal opportunity to fill all positions open to male workers.
b) Pregnancy tests will not be a condition of employment, nor will they be demanded of employees.
c) Workers who take maternity leave will not face dismissal nor threat of dismissal, loss of seniority or deduction of wages, and will be able to return to their former employment at the same rate of pay and benefits that is reasonable with the law of the country. A twelve-week leave without pay shall be granted where no law exists.
d) Workers will not be forced or pressured to use contraception as a condition of employment.
e) Workers will not be exposed to hazards, including glues and solvents that may endanger their safety including their reproductive health.
f) Licensees shall provide appropriate services and accommodation to women workers in connection with pregnancy.

Violence, Abuse and Sexual Harassment
Every employee shall be treated with dignity and respect. No employee shall be subject to any physical, sexual, psychological, or verbal harassment or abuse. Licensees will not use or tolerate any form of corporal punishment.

3. Workplace Safety & Environmental Health

Health, Sanitation and Hygiene Conditions
Employers/Licensees shall provide a safe and healthy working environment to prevent accidents and injury and illness arising out of, linked with, or occurring in the course of work or as a result of the operation of Employer/Licensee facilities. This includes working to eliminate exposures to hazardous substances, such as glues, solvents, dusts and other substances that may endanger worker health. Toward this end, employers shall provide appropriate training and safety equipment to prevent accidents and injury to health arising out of, linked with, or occurring in the course of work or as a result of the operation of Employer/Licensee facilities.

The Licensee shall ensure that its direct operations and those of any subcontractors comply with all workplace safety and health regulations established by the national government where the production facility is located, or with federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations; whichever regulation is more health protective for a given hazard.

4. Environmental Accountability
The Licensee shall ensure that its direct operations and those of any subcontractors comply with all local and national environmental regulations.

5. Wages & Hours

Wages and Benefits
Employers shall recognize that wages are essential to meeting employees’ basic needs and pay employees, as a floor, at least the minimum wage required by local law or the prevailing industry wage, whichever is higher, and shall provide legally mandated benefits.

Overtime and hours of work for U.S. employees shall be governed by the laws of the United States. Employees working outside of the United States shall (i) not be required to work more than the lesser of (a) 48 hours per week and 12 hours overtime or (b) the limits on regular and overtime hours allowed by the law of the country of manufacture or, where the laws of such country do not limit the hours of work, the regular work week in such country plus 12 hours overtime and (ii) be entitled to at least one day off in every seven day period. In addition to their compensation for regular hours of work, hourly and/or quota-based wage employees shall be compensated for overtime hours at such a premium rate as is legally required in the country of manufacture or, in those countries where such laws do not exist, at a rate at least one and one-half their regular hourly compensation rate beyond the maximum hourly workweek where straight time is paid.

Defined Work Week
Overtime and hours of work for U.S. employees shall be governed by the laws of the United States. Hourly and/or quota-based wage employees working outside of the United States shall (i) not be required to work a regular work week of more than the lesser of (a) 48 hours per week or (b) the limits on regular hours allowed by the law of the country of manufacture, and (ii) be entitled to at least one day off in every seven day period, as well as holidays and vacations.

Compliance & Disclosure
Prior to licensing or licensing renewal, the licensee shall provide the following to Carnegie Mellon:

The company names, owners and officers, addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses and nature of the business association for all of the licensees’ contractors and manufacturing plants which are involved in the manufacturing process of items which bear, or will bear, the name, trademarks and/or images of Carnegie Mellon;

Written assurances that it and its contractors adhere to the “Standards” in this Code (except that in the initial phase-in of the Code, licensee must provide such written assurances within 6 months of receipt of this Code); and

A summary of the steps taken, and/or difficulties encountered, during the preceding year in implementing and enforcing this Code at each site.

The licensee shall immediately report to Carnegie Mellon when changes occur that materially affects the application of these labor standards, such as the selection of a new factory.

Questions about this Code of Workplace Conduct should be directed to: John Marano, Licensing Coordinator, Trademark Licensing Office, at 8-3904.