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Corporate social responsibility

We sell our products in the dynamic fashion world. A constantly changing world in which each innovation is quickly followed by another. Sissy-Boy strives for growth and innovation, but in a responsible way. We continuously seek improvements for our production chain. Sissy-boy finds it important that everyone who works on our products does so under the best possible working conditions. We live in a world of ever more people where raw materials are becoming ever scarcer. Sissy-Boy considers it her responsibility to look for ways to have our products created in the most responsible way together with stakeholders. We are supported in this effort by the CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) department of the Varova Fashion Group. The Varova Fashion Group owns multiple Dutch fashion brands and determines their policy in the field of CSR, or 'Responsible Growth'.


Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile

Sissy-Boy is proud to say that we, as a forerunner, have signed the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile. Together with over 60 Dutch fashion brands, the government, NGOs, trade associations, and unions, we have joined forces to improve and strengthen sustainability in the international clothing and textile production chain.

We signed the agreement on July 4, 2016. We have taken our first steps in the first year, and now we are ready for the next phase. We have recently charted where our clothing is made and have, where needed, put a lot of energy into improving the working conditions at these production sites. We had talks with the factories that needed to make improvements and made plans for how they should achieve this. Furthermore, we have created an overview of the impact of our raw materials and will start using more sustainable materials in our products in the coming years. We have also compiled a list of animal products we want to exclude from our production process. All of these plans are described in an extensive report that we presented to the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile for review.

Click the link to find out more about the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile.  http://www.internationalrbc.org/garments-textile?sc_lang=nl

Working conditions

BSCI

We value good working conditions for the people who work on our products, which is why we have joined the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) of the Foreign Trade Association. Together with the BSCI, we work on improving the working conditions at our manufacturers step by step by means of audits and improvement plans. 

We have implemented the BSCI Code of Conduct into our policy, participate in training sessions and workshops, and have independent audits performed at our production sites. The results of these independent checks are sent to the supplier and to us, after which we create an improvement plan if necessary. If a supplier meets our social compliance requirements, they can be added to our supplier database; otherwise, they cannot. Important themes to take into account during audits include: healthy and safe working conditions, no form of forced labour, and no child labour.

In addition to the audits at our production sites, an important goal for Sissy-Boy is to minimize the risk of child labour in the coming years. Varova Fashion Group is working together in a Multi Stakeholder Initiative (MSI) with other Dutch fashion companies and NGOs, such as Unicef and Stop Child Labor, to reduce and ultimately prevent child labour in our chain.

If you want to know more about BSCI, visit: www.bsci-intl.org

Environment

Sissy-Boy is aware of the impact it has on both people and animals by producing clothing. We realise it is difficult to restore affected components. Prevention is better than cure! That is why we want to reduce our impact and not affect the environment where possible.

Raw materials

In order to reduce the impact on the environment and the use of certain materials, we have created an overview of the materials that are considered sustainable. We will start using more of these materials in our clothing, such as organic cotton, lyocell/tencel, and linen. One of our priorities is to replace cotton with organic cotton, because this is our most used material and one of the least sustainable materials.

Water pollution, chemicals, water and energy

Factories which produce clothing have a large impact on the environment because they use water, energy, and chemicals. Our policy focuses on the following processes: dyeing, printing, and the places where clothing is washed. In close collaboration with our partners, we have created policy plans to reduce the use of chemicals and the impact of water pollution and energy consumption in the coming years.

Animal welfare

All suppliers within Varova Fashion Group have signed the VGF Code of Conduct, in which they declare that animal welfare is respected on the farms, during transport, and in slaughterhouses. Angora wool, real fur, and material from exotic and protected animals may not be used in our products. We have also set the goal for ourselves to only purchase down from suppliers with a valid down certificate. We also want to use a control mechanism so that we know for sure that the leather we use was obtained under decent circumstances. We do not use sheepwool (merino) obtained through mulesing. All suppliers must provide us with a statement that their merino wool products are mulesing-free.

Production sites

Varova Fashion Group produces its private label clothing in the following countries: Bulgaria, China, Greece, India, Indonesia, Italy, Croatia, Macedonia, Morocco, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Tunesia, Turkey.

FAQ

Do you have any questions about our CSR policy? Then first read our FAQ, as it may contain the answer you are looking for. If not, please send your question to: csr@varovafashion.nl. We will respond as soon as possible.

1. How is the Responsible Growth (CSR) policy at Sissy-Boy organised? 

Varova Fashion Group is owns gsus, Kings Of Indigo, Tumble 'N Dry, Sissy-Boy, Men At Work, Open32, Silvercreek, J.C. Rags, Ontour, LESS, MEES, and Miniverse, and supports these brands in the field of Responsible Growth where necessary. The CSR department of Varova Fashion Group determines the Responsible Growth policy for these twelve brands. The CSR department makes plans regarding corporate social responsibility and implements this policy together with the brands. Together, we ensure ensure the improvement of the working and environmental conditions in our chain.

2. How are the factories where Sissy-Boy (Varova Fashion Group) products are made checked?

We are affiliated with BSCI, whereby external independent parties regularly perform audits at our private label clothing manufacturers. The factory and Varova Fashion Group receive a report with the results of the audit, after which we look at what steps need to be taken to improve the working conditions, if necessary. For more info, see: www.bsci-intl.org.

3. What does Sissy-Boy (Varova Fashion Group) do to prevent child labour?

We see child labour as a zero tolerance topic in our policy and production process. This also applies to forced labour and unhealthy working conditions. We pay extra attention to these topics to prevent any malpractices from occurring in our chain. Factories regularly receive audits that provide insight into the situation of this manufacturer. We always discuss the results directly with our manufacturers. In addition, Varova Fashion Group is actively working with other Dutch fashion companies and NGOs (Unicef, Stop Child Labor) in a Multi Stakeholder Initiative (MSI) to reduce and ultimately prevent child labour in our chain.

4. In what way does Sissy-Boy (Varova Fashion Group) take animal welfare into account?

Our goal is to only use animal materials that have been obtained in a decent way in our entire production chain. This measure means that, for instance, we do not use angora wool, (real) fur, and exotic animal skins in our products. In addition, we have set ourselves the goal that in the future, we will only purchase down from suppliers with a valid down certificate. The use of merino wool is also subject to conditions. All of our products must have a mulesing-free statement.

5. What kind of sustainable materials does Sissy-Boy (Varova Fashion Group) use for its products?

Sustainable materials include organic materials on the one hand, and materials that are sustainable in origin on the other hand, such as linen. With organic production, the use of genetically modified seeds, pesticides, and chemical fertilisers is prohibited. Through the use of effective watering techniques, the production of organic products is more sustainable than the usual production methods. Varova Fashion Group stimulates the use of organic cotton, linen, and tencel/lyocell, and more in our products. These materials will increasingly be found in our collections.

6. Where is Sissy-Boy's (Varova Fashion Group) clothing made?

Our clothing is made in many places all over the world. For an overview, go to 'Production sites' at block four.

7. Is Sissy-Boy (Varova Fashion Group) aware of the working conditions at manufacturers of its third brands?

We have not yet been able to fully map the way in which our third brands shape their CSR policies. We do know that some of our third brands have signed the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile. Currently, Varova Fashion Group has mapped 100% of its own production sites of the private label clothing brands. In the future, there will be more insight into the CSR policy and transparency of the production sites of third brands as well.