Alta Gracia Annual Compliance Verification
|To:||WRC Affiliate Universities and Colleges|
|From:||Scott Nova and Laura Gutierrez|
|Date:||January 30, 2020|
|Re:||New Report: Posmi Sweaters Ltd. (Bangladesh)|
The WRC has completed its annual, comprehensive review of the Altagracia Project factory located in Villa Alta Gracia, Dominican Republic. Our 2018-2019 verification report assesses the company’s compliance with labor standards during this monitoring period. The factory produces collegiate licensed apparel under the Alta Gracia Label and for Fanatics Apparel.
This year, the WRC has once again verified that Alta Gracia fully complied with its commitments to not only uphold the law but to fulfill all of the superior standards to which it has committed. Our review confirmed that the factory continues to pay workers a living wage and to fully respect workers’ right to freedom of association. To the WRC’s knowledge, Alta Gracia is the only garment factory in the developing world that pays its workers a living wage. The impact of the living wage on the well-being of workers and their families continues to be profound.
As stated in the report, during the monitoring period, factory owners experienced operational challenges, but the WRC found Alta Gracia’s commitment to uphold all worker rights to be unwavering. The factory complied with all labor standards including the payment of the current living wage, which is increased for inflation every year and is now equivalent to more than two and a half times the wage earned by other Dominican garment workers.
Alta Gracia has maintained full respect for freedom of association. Despite changes in leadership during the past two years, the company’s owner and general manager maintained open lines of communication with worker representatives and addressed workplace issues with the factory union as they arose. During the current year, Alta Gracia and the SITRALPRO union initiated the process to renew the factory’s collective bargaining agreement, a third, consecutive agreement that establishes benefits for workers above and beyond the requirements of law.
The company has continued to make improvements to the factory’s health and safety conditions. This monitoring period included improvements to the factory’s lighting and cooling systems, the purchase of new ergonomic chairs, and other improvements that contribute to a healthy workplace environment for factory employees.
Alta Gracia continues to allow the WRC full access to factory installations and records as well as the opportunity to speak with management, union leaders, and workers. When a complaint or issue of concern arises, the WRC is able to quickly communicate with company representatives to obtain additional information and, if necessary, make recommendations. During this period, the company has once again acted promptly to address any issues that require attention.
As always, please contact me if you have any questions.