The ETN Living Wage Wednesdays aims to increase our members’ knowledge about living wages, and provide practical advice and inspiration as to how a purchasing company can work to enable and implement the payment of living wages in their supply chain. The series entails members meetings with presentations by external experts, to enable dialogue, discussions and sharing of lessons learned and best practice. We aim to keep the sessions practical, leaving substantial time for questions from our members, to strive towards providing relevant knowledge for your company, supply chain and business model.

Introductory session and members meeting

23 March 2022 – 09.00-10.00 – Norwegian

Speaker: Marthe Røssaak, advisor, Ethical Trade Norway
This session will set the stage for the living wage series, by providing members with basic knowledge, tools and resources to get the most out of the upcoming sessions. We will cover:

  • What is a living wage and why is it important? Incl. Transparency Act
  • Key tools and resources
  • What can Norwegian companies do?
  • Introducing the upcoming speakers
  • Q&A

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Nudie Jeans: Living wage journey and approach

30 March 2022 – 09.00-10.30 – Norwegian / Swedish

Speaker: Sandya Lang, Sustainability Manager at Nudie Jeans

Sandya will share her experiences from coordinating the living wage efforts by Nudie Jeans. Nudie has been referred to as an example of best practice on living wages in several guidance papers and articles. In collaboration with Fairwear, Nudie Jeans has utilised a method of paying a premium to cover their share in the gap between actual wages and living wages, where the premium is distributed equally to all the workers at the factory. Sandya has valuable first-hand experience, being involved in Nudie Jeans’ first pilot project on living wages in India, and until today where she has among others coordinated living wage action on behalf of several brands, ensuring all workers are paid a living wage at a production site in Turkey.

Resources:

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Fair Wear Foundation: Fair Price App

6 April 2022 – 09.00-10.30 – English

Speakers: Anne van Lakerveld, Living Wage Coordinator at Fair Wear Foundation
Paula de Beer, Living Wage Officer at Fair Wear Foundation

Fair Wear Foundation has been focusing on living wages for a long time, and have among others created the widely referenced ‘Living Wages: An Explorer’s Notebook’. They also developed tools and models to calculate costing to enable payment of living wages. Anne and Paula are coordinating the work on living wages at Fair Wear, and will talk to us about the newest development: the Fair Price App.

The digital tool is designed for textile suppliers to provide assistance in calculating costs for any order to enable the payment of living wages. The supplier can select the level of transparency when showing the cost breakdown to buyers. The tool currently being piloted by some of the Fair Wear members, and will shortly be offered to external companies. FWF also aims to hold information sessions for suppliers on how to use the tool.

Resources:

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ACT on Living Wages and H&M’s living wage journey

27 April 2022 – 09.00-10.30 – English

Speakers:
Bea Ruoff, Head of Operations, Accountability and Monitoring at ACT on Living Wages
Johan Genneby, Global Sustainability Manager at H&M Group
Linda Ingolfsdottir, Strategy Lead for Fair Jobs at H&M Group

ACT on Living Wages is an international agreement between trade unions and global brands and retailers to transform the garment, textile and footwear industry and achieve living wages for workers. Their focus is on collective bargaining at industry level, assisted by responsible purchasing practices. Bea is an expert in wage setting and will share more about the ACT approach and her experience with working strategically with trade unions and brands towards realising living wages.

H&M has been focusing on living wages for a long time, and launched their living wage strategy in 2013. H&M was part of the founding members of ACT, and have been collaborating with ACT on their living wage approach. Linda will talk to us about how H&M has been working with living wages historically, results and lessons learned so far. Johan will present the H&M Group’s work with wages in the production supply chain going forward.

Resources:

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Fairtrade on Living Wages

11 / 5 May 2022 – 09.00-10.30 – Norwegian/English

Speakers: TBC

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Living wages in India and Pakistan

1 June 2022 – 09.00-10.30 – English

Speakers:
Alok Singh, Regional Director, South Asia, Ethical Trading Initiative (based in New Delhi)
Abil Amin, Country Manager for Bangladesh, Ethical Trading Initiative (based in Dhaka)

In this session we are going more into country-specific context for enabling and implementing living wages in the supply chain, in India and Bangladesh.

Our Regional Director for South Asia will talk about the context in India, going over the recent changes in the labour laws, including the Wage Code. He will also talk about the context in general, and give insights into the different contexts across the country’s states.

Our Country Manager in Bangladesh is working with textile factories supplying ETI. He will talk about the context in Bangladesh, with particular emphasis on what buyers must be aware of when initiating talks about living wages with suppliers in Bangladesh.

This session aims to give practical advise to companies sourcing from these companies, but the relevance will also reach beyond these two production countries.

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