Oakland, CA – November 22, 2011 – Good World Solutions, (formerly World of Good Development Organization) best known for its award-winning Fair Wage Guide, today announced that it has re-launched under a new name and partnered with Fair Trade USA in order to expand its technology tools and reach over a million workers. Good World Solutions aims to increase transparency in global supply chains by giving workers a voice and giving buyers the information they need to source responsibly.
The Fair Wage Guide, first published in 2006 in collaboration with leaders of the Fair Trade craft community, is the organization’s flagship tool. It is now used by more than 900 NGOs and companies in 81 countries, and will remain free and accessible online. Good World is building on this legacy to expand its technology portfolio.
“In a world where supply chains are increasingly more complex, we need tools to communicate directly with farmers and workers. Imagine being able to reach all of the workers in your supply chain with a simple mobile tool,” said Heather Franzese, Director of Good World Solutions. “Our technology gives workers a voice in CSR efforts. Our goal is to make workers the agents of change in their own development.”
Good World Solutions will drive change through three innovative programs:
Partnership with Fair Trade USA
Fair Trade USA, the leading certifier of Fair Trade products in the United States, recently announced a goal to double its impact for farming communities by 2015. Good World Solutions will work with Fair Trade USA to help achieve this goal. They will develop technology solutions that monitor working conditions against Fair Trade standards, track social outcomes and livelihoods, and engage and empower Fair Trade farmers and workers. The partnership will provide technology solutions to more than 1 million farmers and workers around the world.
“Partnering with Good World Solutions is a natural next step in deepening our commitment to the millions of farmers and workers we serve,” said Todd Stark, Chief Operating Officer of Fair Trade USA. “This technology opens new doors to enhance our monitoring and certification program, and to measure the real impact, helping us to accurately assess the relationship between Fair Trade and poverty alleviation.”
More than 80 percent of the world’s population has access to mobile phones, and this number continues to grow every year. Building on increasing global connectivity, Labor Link uses mobile phones to survey workers using interactive voice response (IVR) technology, giving companies a way to connect directly with the people that make their products. Anonymous and real-time survey data is visualized for partners to track changes in their livelihoods and inform responsible sourcing decisions. Labor Link is already operational in Peru and India, and will expand to at least four more countries next year.
Labor Link is using indicators like the Progress out of Poverty Index™, developed by Grameen Foundation, to measure the true impact of efforts to alleviate poverty. “Labor Link represents the future of supply chain transparency. This exciting new tool enables us to monitor our supply chains and measure our social impact in an incredibly time and cost-effective manner,” says Scott Leonard of Indigenous Designs.
Fair Wage Guide
A free, open source web-based platform that stipulates wage levels that allow workers to support themselves and contribute to their local economies, the Fair Wage Guide has positively affected the lives of more than 30,000 workers and artisans globally. Since its development in 2005, Fair Wage Guide users have reported, on average, 20 percent higher earnings for their products. An iPhone app, currently in development, will give buyers real-time access to wage information in the field for the first time.
B Corporation recently adopted the Fair Wage Guide as the wage standard for their Global Impact Investing Rating System (GIIRS). “Our GIIRS Ratings & Analytics platform relies on the Fair Wage Guide to provide granular data on wages, “said Flory Wilson, Director of International Standards at B Lab. “We require accurate and up-to-date global data and the Fair Wage Guide is the best resource available.”
Good World Solutions is seeking partnership with like-minded companies and organizations to expand its portfolio of technology services to new regions and to impact the lives of vulnerable workers in supply chains.
About Good World Solutions
Good World Solutions develops innovative technology solutions to serve millions of vulnerable workers and artisans in global supply chains. The organization’s affordable and scalable technology is used to promote fair wages, monitor working conditions in real time, track social impact, and engage workers directly. By increasing transparency in global supply chains, Good World Solutions drives systemic change in company buying practices and catalyzes economic empowerment for the people that make popular consumer products.
About Fair Trade USA
Fair Trade USA (previously TransFair USA), a nonprofit organization, is the leading third-party certifier of Fair Trade products in the United States. Fair Trade USA audits and certifies transactions between U.S. companies and their international suppliers to guarantee that the farmers and workers producing Fair Trade Certified goods were paid fair prices and wages, work in safe conditions, protect the environment, and receive community development funds to empower and uplift their communities. Fair Trade USA educates consumers, brings new manufacturers and retailers into the Fair Trade system, and provides farmers with tools, training and resources to thrive as international businesspeople. Visit http://www.fairtradeusa.org for more information.