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Santa Cruz City Schools |  BP  3301  Business and Noninstructional Operations

Fair Trade And Apparel Purchasing   

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The Governing Board recognizes its responsibility to implement and model purchasing practices that make positive contributions to local, national and global economies and working conditions. School sponsored programs are major purchasers of apparel. Because there have been well documented incidents of worker exploitation in the apparel industry, the Board seeks to take steps to insure that all school sponsored apparel purchases are conducted in a responsible manner.

SCCS schools and programs shall use apparel that is manufactured by acceptable or Fair Trade companies whenever the price of a Fair Trade item is less than or equal to the current price of an item purchased from a non-Fair Trade vendor. In cases where no Fair Trade company can be identified, a school may be exempt from this requirement for that particular item.

In cases where no fair trade merchandise is available at a price lower than or equal to a non-fair trade price, a school may be exempt from this requirement for that particular item.

To be considered a Fair Trade vendor; a company must meet the standards of the Fair Labor Association's Code of Conduct and be certified by a third party organization. Considerations include:

Forced Labor

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

Child Labor

No person shall be employed at an age younger than 15 (or 14 where the law of the country of manufacture allows*) or younger than the age for completing compulsory education in the country of manufacture where such age is higher than 15.

Harassment or Abuse

Every employee shall be treated with respect and dignity. No employee shall be subject to any physical, sexual, psychological or verbal harassment or abuse.


No person shall be subject to any discrimination in employment, including hiring, salary, benefits, advancement, discipline, termination or retirement, on the basis of gender, race, religion, age, disability, sexual orientation, nationality, political opinion, or social or ethnic origin.

Health and Safety

Employers shall provide a safe and healthy working environment 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 facilities.

Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

Employers shall recognize and respect the right of employees to freedom of association and collective bargaining.

Wages and Benefits

Employers recognize that wages are essential to meeting employees' basic needs. Employers shall 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.

Hours of Work

Except in extraordinary business circumstances, employees shall 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 a country do not limit the hours of work, the regular work week in such a country plus 12 hours overtime - and be entitled to at least one day off in every seven day period.

Overtime Compensation

In addition to their compensation for regular hours of work, employees shall be compensated for overtime hours at such 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 equal to their regular hourly compensation rate.

Fair Trade Vendors must provide evidence of Fair Trade certification by an objective third party organization authorized to certify such claims.

The district purchasing department shall assist sites in developing a list of approved Fair Trade vendors.


adopted: November 10, 2010 Soquel, California