SA 8000: 2008 is an international standard for social responsibility. It was established in 1989 by SAI (Social Accountability International) in association with the Council on Economic Priorities, and today it is the most famous internationally-recognized labour standard on workers’ care. SA 8000: 2008 also covers the already existing international agreements involving the Conventions of the International Labour Organization, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Every socially responsible company in the world has based their work on the principles of this standard. SA 8000: 2008 involves management of the following nine topics through documented procedures:
- Child Labor
- Workers’ health and Safety,
- Freedom of Association & Right to Collective Bargaining
- Disciplinary Practices
- Working Hours
- Management Systems (Policy for social responsibility)
The aim of this standard is to ensure that companies produce their products and provide services by following an ethical codex which: avoids the use of child labour, forced labour, discrimination on any grounds and promotes work in a healthy and safe environment. This standard protects every employee’s right to timely and appropriate monthly remuneration, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, suitable working hours and documented management system in accordance with the standard’s requirements.
The key benefits of SA 8000: 2008 certification are:
- proving company devotion to social responsibility,
- improving management and company performance through workers’ increased satisfaction,
- supporting the corporate vision of the company,
- creating opportunities for strengthening the loyalty of employees, associates and customers, and
- achieving market competitiveness and opportunities for facilitating cooperation with new business partners.