WORLD NEWS

ICTI Ethical Toy Program releases 2018/19 annual review

Published on: 12th June 2020

IETP is the leading responsible sourcing programme for the global toy, play, entertainment and publishing industries.

The ICTI Ethical Toy Program has released its 2018/19 annual review, which details the positive impact the programme has been making on the lives of factory workers in China, Vietnam and Indonesia over the past couple of years.

With support from Buyer Members including Lego, the Ethical Toy Program’s Family-Friendly Spaces (FFS) scheme has grown from two participating factories in 2016 to 30 in 2019. All expressed interest in opening FFS again in future years, with some committing to increase the size of the spaces to accommodate more children.

Migrant Parent Training helps workers build relationships with their left-behind children, complementing FFS by providing training and support to help migrant workers overcome the challenges associated with being separated from their children. In 2018, three MTP sessions were held, with 150 workers participating and 225 children benefiting. In 2019, 20 MTP sessions took place; 859 workers participated and 1,289 children benefited as a result.

IETP’s Worker Helpline has supported over 17,000 workers since it was launched in 2010. Investment in the level of service and support offered, alongside a move to bring the helpline in-house, has resulted in a 70% increase in call management; by the end of 2019, 17,469 calls had been received and fully resolved.

In 2019, IETP concluded its two-year Women’s Empowerment Pilot (WEP) in India, delivered in collaboration with BSR. The initial phase of this Dutch Government-funded pilot included a scoping study to better understand the issues impacting women in factories in India – an emerging centre for toy production. Phase two consisted of in-factory training on gender awareness, health, communications, and prevention of gender-based violence delivered to ‘Core Groups’ comprised of managers, HR staff, and front-line workers. Before the WEP, participants rated their relationships at home as 3, on a scale from 0 to 10, with 10 being the highest. After programme completion, the average rating was 9.

Around two-thirds of the world’s toys are produced in IETP Certified factories. In 2019, some 2,784 audits were carried out by accredited audit firms. The programme also piloted a new remediation programme which increases support for those factories which struggle to maintain compliance, launched further updates to the IETP Audit Checklist and continued the roll-out of Progress Visits, which first launched in 2018, to cover all IETP Certified Factories.

During 2018-19, IETP welcomed 28 new Buyer Members, bringing its total number to 53 since the initial version of the programme launched in 2016. In February 2018, it launched its updated IETP Buyer Membership Package at New York Toy Fair. Buyer Membership includes access to Connect Platform which buyers use to monitor and manage their supply chain with updates and alerts delivered in real-time.

IETP has also outlined its priorities for 2020, as follows:

  • Grow IETP’s Membership Community to include more Factories and Buyers
  • Further expand geographical coverage and support new product sectors
  • Invest to develop new services, including a new Environmental Module, Beyond Tier One Assessment Tools, enhancements to reporting for members through Connect and more training support for workers, factory management and our buyer members
  • Review and re-design IETP’s Program Methodology to consider new ways of
    working
  • Extend worker well-being programmes to reach thousands more workers

Carmel Giblin, CEO & president of the ICTI Ethical Toy Program, told Toy World: ““I am delighted to share details of our work over the last two years in this report. It has been a very busy time and we’ve achieved much, all made possible with the commitment and support of the toy industry and the great team at IETP. I’m particularly proud of how we have developed the programme to deliver more value to factories, buyers and workers.  Changes like the introduction of Progress Visits for factories and our unique Worker Well-Being Programs mean that IETP is correctly acknowledged as the leading labour standards program operating today.”

For more information, readers can email Carmel – carmel.giblin@ethicaltoyprogram.org.

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