ALEXANDRIA, Va. and PARIS, France, March 16, 2021 — The Responsible Minerals Initiative of the Responsible Business Alliance and the Responsible Mica Initiative today announced the release of a Global Workplace Standard for Mica Processors. The new Standard aims to improve conditions for workers in mica supply chains by leveraging the collective experience of these initiatives and benchmarking against internationally recognized frameworks.
The Global Workplace Standard for Mica Processors is a reference document applicable to mica processors in all countries. It is based on the initial Workplace Standards developed by the Responsible Mica Initiative and on the suite of Minerals Due Diligence Standards and the Risk Readiness Assessment developed by the Responsible Minerals Initiative.
“The Standard supports global coverage toward the improvement of working conditions at mica processors and within their supply chains,” said Leah Butler, Vice President of Responsible Sourcing at the Responsible Business Alliance. “It is a landmark standard as it fully integrates OECD-aligned supply chain due diligence with environmental, social and governance matters.”
The Global Mica Standard covers several components:
- Environmental criteria cover the impact from operations on the environment and biodiversity as well as on communities adjacent to the processors.
- Occupational health and safety provisions address facility hygiene, safe operation of equipment, personal protection requirements and access to first aid and canteens.
- Social obligations cover a range of labor practices such as age of employment, fair working hours, minimum wages and overtime, grievance mechanisms, freedom of association and diversity provisions, including women’s rights and under-represented communities.
- Governance requirements ensure that businesses are duly registered, adhere to laws and regulations.
- Supply chain due diligence criteria include the OECD’s Due Diligence Guidance on supply chains, such as operating procedures and practices of a processor’s raw material procurement and business relationships.
“The ongoing collaboration between the Responsible Mica Initiative and the Responsible Minerals Initiative will create further synergies that will enable companies to benefit from the organizations’ experience and strengths while working toward a consistent framework to conduct due diligence, support responsible mica supply chains, and promote understanding of mica use and applications in various industries,” said Fanny Fremont, Executive Director of the Responsible Mica Initiative.
View the Global Mica Standard here.
The Responsible Minerals Initiative will initiate audits for mica processors under the Responsible Minerals Assurance Process. Mica processors undergoing their first assessment will be able to access the Initial Audit Fund to cover the full cost of initial audits and may receive annual renewable grants to support due diligence for sourcing from high-risk areas. Mica processors are also eligible to receive annual financial assistance to cover up to 75 percent of the cost of recurring audits.
Companies are encouraged to utilize the Responsible Minerals Initiative’s Mica Reporting Template to map their mica supply chains and utilize the Risk Readiness Assessment to complete and view mica processor and mine self-assessments against 32 industry norms covering social, environmental and governance issue areas. These tools aim to improve transparency and promote a common understanding of good practices and a means to consistently assess risks and actions to improve performance within mineral supply chains. Mica training for processors and auditors will be available on the Responsible Minerals Initiative eLearning Academy.
The Responsible Mica Initiative will launch an associated collective auditing protocol open to its members to encourage auditing synergies as well as assess progress in effective implementation of the Standard. It will also develop National Guidance for mica processors in India and in Madagascar, as well as update its processors-dedicated training sessions, in line with the new Global Workplace Standard for Mica Processors, as practical tools to support processors in implementing the Standard in their local context.
About the Responsible Minerals Initiative
The Responsible Minerals Initiative (RMI) is an initiative of the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA). The RMI is a multi-industry initiative with more than 400 member companies. Its members contribute to the development and international uptake of a range of tools and resources focused on minerals supply chain due diligence, including independent third-party audit programs for smelters, Minerals Reporting Templates, supply chain risk assessment tools, Country of Origin data, and guidance documents on responsible sourcing of all minerals/metals. The RMI runs regular workshops on responsible sourcing issues and contributes to policy development with civil society organizations and governments. For more information, visit ResponsibleMineralsInitiative.org
About the Responsible Mica Initiative
The Responsible Mica Initiative is a non-governmental organization created to establish a fair, responsible and sustainable mica supply chain in India by promoting responsible sourcing practices, and eradicating child labor and unacceptable working conditions. RMI members are drawn from industries associated with the mica supply chain in partnership with civil society organizations and local stakeholders. The Responsible Mica Initiative is an association, established in accordance with the French Law of 1901 concerning non-profit organizations, with its head office located in 44-46 rue de la Bienfaisance, 75008 PARIS – France
Jarrett Bens, Director of Communications
Responsible Business Alliance
Phone: +1 571.858.5721
Fanny Fremont, Executive Director
Responsible Mica Initiative