Our Focus on Protecting Human Rights
Because Nordstrom Product Group is relatively small compared to other manufacturer/retailers that produce similar merchandise, we find great value in joining with others to help drive influence and potential change through collaborative partnerships. As such, our efforts to ensure the health and safety of factory workers are supported by several third-party organizations, including Business for Social Responsibility (BSR). Through our partnership with BSR, we collaborate to improve conditions in factories, to create sustainable sources of clean water, and to develop long-term solutions for fair and safe factory conditions that exceed basic compliance monitoring.
Business for Social Responsibility (BSR)
Improving working conditions
Nordstrom has been a member of Business for Social Responsibility (BSR) since 1998. During that time we have partnered on a number of projects. One of these is HERproject—an initiative that strives to improve women's general and reproductive health by providing health education and services to female workers in our contracted factories. We also support a professional development program for factories in China through BSR's China Training Institute. Participation in BSR allows us to collaborate with people and businesses across many industries and functions around the world, with the mutual goal of improving social responsibility.
Focusing on collaboration
In addition to our partnerships through BSR, we have established efforts with industry peers to consistently improve working conditions in the factories and communities where we source Nordstrom products. These include the following:
Brand Collaboration Working Group
Nordstrom collaborates with peer companies in shared facilities to standardize processes, expectations and communication with factories. These efforts are designed to improve working conditions by reducing duplication and increasing the combined influence of companies across our industry.
Fair Factories Clearinghouse
The Fair Factories Clearinghouse is a nonprofit organization dedicated to continuous improvement in factory working conditions. Our involvement with this organization allows us to positively affect working conditions by helping identify opportunities for collaboration with other retailers. Learn more about the Fair Factories Clearinghouse.
Sustainable Apparel Coalition
Nordstrom is a member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition. The Coalition is working to reduce the social and environmental impacts of apparel and footwear products by building an industry-wide index—the Apparel Index—that will measure and evaluate products' sustainability performance, including social and labor impacts. The index will help to identify opportunities for improvement in product production and provide customers with more information about the impacts of the products they're considering purchasing. The Coalition is working to develop Social and Labor indicators that the apparel and footwear design and manufacturing industries will eventually adopt. Learn more about the Sustainable Apparel Coalition.
Better Work is a partnership program between the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC). The program aims to improve both compliance with labor standards and competitiveness in global supply chains. Better Work develops global tools and country-level projects, with a focus on sustainable solutions that build cooperation between governments, employers' and workers' organizations, and international buyers. Better Work supports buyers in implementing the ILO core international labor standards and national labor law. The projects have a strong emphasis on improving worker-management cooperation, working conditions, and social dialogue between the factory, Better Work, and the participating buyers. Nordstrom signed on to the Better Work principles with current participation in Vietnam and Cambodia. Learn more about Better Work.