Social Audits. International Relationships Audit

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Assertion:

The organization strives to adhere to the same social and environmental standards in host countries as it does in its home countries. The well being of a socially responsible company and its host country are interdependent, and their relationship is non-exploitative.

Human Rights:

  • The organization complies with human rights standards as outlined in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
    • Discuss with management how the organization ensures compliance with human rights standards abroad. Obtain written policy regarding conducting business abroad.
    • The organization has procedures to gain an understanding of the political, social, economic and cultural background of each country in which it operates so that it may transact all business with respect to the host country. Has the organization developed a long-term strategy to operate productively by considering the needs of the host country?
    • Determine the amount of trade, if any, with nations that is officially discouraged.

Employee and Environmental Standards:

  • The organization follows clear written guidelines for ensuring fair employment in accordance with the International Labor Organization’s Conventions. The organization also has guidelines for meeting environmental standards in international operations. These guidelines are available for review by all employees, suppliers and contractors.
    • Review guidelines and discuss with management. Are productive employment opportunities available? Do the guidelines have provisions for such concerns as reasonable wages, health and safety, freedom of association and minimum age?
    • Does the organization meet the highest level of environmental standards to which it is held? Are the organization’s environmental policies and procedures abroad similar to those in the home country [as documented in Section D of this audit program]?

Purchasing and Contracts:

  • The organization gives preference to local suppliers. The organization will not knowingly enter into business relationships with firms that use any form of compulsory labor (child labor or prison labor) and allow sub-standard working conditions.
    • Discuss purchasing policy with procurement agent. Does the organization perform or commission any audits to ensure vendors comply with labor and human rights standards.
    •  Interview key vendors to determine if they have written international standards for conducting business.

Community Development

  • The organization strives to ensure that its international operations will not lead to the displacement of existing communities.
    • Discuss with management the organization’s policies for community development abroad. Does the organization contribute to social advancement though human rights, education programs, welfare, etc?

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