INDIGENOUS Fair Trade Principles
Based on the standards of the World Fair Trade Organization
Create Opportunities for Economically and Socially Marginalized Producers
Our Fair Trade strategy is to alleviate poverty and support sustainable development. We create social and economic opportunities through trading partnerships with marginalized producers. We place the interests of producers and their communities as the primary concern of their enterprise.
- Year round work.
- Direct feedback from individual artisans.
- Zero interest loans for machines, buildings, tuition/education.
- Work from home.
- Flexible hours.
- Creating opportunity for Social Entrepreneurs.
Develop Fair and Accountable Relationships
INDIGENOUS maintains relationships that are fair, consistent, and respectful with both producers and customers. We show consideration for producers by sharing information about the entire supply chain through proactive communication. We create mechanisms to help customers and producers feel actively involved in the trading chain. If problems arise, we work cooperatively with fair trade partners and other organizations to implement solutions.
Maintain Long-Term Relationships and Build Capacity
Fair Trade is a means for developing sustainable commerce for producers. INDIGENOUS maintains long-term relationships based on solidarity, trust, and mutual respect, so that producers can improve their skills and their access to markets. We help producers to build capacity through proactive communication, financial and technical assistance, market information, and dialogue. We seek to share lessons learned, to spread best practices, and to strengthen the connections between communities, including among producer groups.
- Indigenous brings the knowledge and quality control to build capacity and scale.
- Zero interest loans for building improvement and knitting machines.
- Root Capital
- Build and plan capacities but need to make sure that we fill those capacities.
Promote Fair Trade and Mindfulness
Fair Trade encourages an understanding by all participants of their role in world trade. We actively raise awareness about Fair Trade and the possibility of greater justice in the global economic system. We encourage customers and producers to ask questions about conventional and alternative supply chains and to make informed choices. We demonstrate that trade can be a positive force for improving living standards, health, education, the distribution of power and the environment in the communities with which they work.
- Fair trade and environmental training within supply chain.
- Fostering fair trade collaborations and pilot programs with marginalized communities that we work with. Higg Index, World of Good.
- Helping other brands and partners that we work with improve the labor and human rights issues in their supply chains.
- Raising awareness with consumers.
- Contributing to external campaigns to raise awareness
Pay Promptly and Fairly
Fair Trade empowers producers to set prices within the framework of the true costs of labor, time, materials, sustainable growth and related factors. We take steps to ensure that producers have the capacity to manage this process. We provide fair wages in the local context. We exceed national & local minimum standards for our employees and producers. We seek to ensure that income is distributed equitably at all times, particularly equal pay for equal work by women and men. We ensure prompt payment to all of our partners. Producers are offered access to pre-finance of handmade goods with favorable terms (e.g. Root Capital). We supply financial and technical support as well as shared community planning to build capacity.
Support Safe & Empowering Working Conditions
Fair Trade means a safe and healthy working environment free of forced labor. Throughout the trading chain, we cultivate workplaces that empower people to participate in the decisions that affect them. We seek to eliminate discrimination based on race, caste, national origin, religion, disability, gender, sexual orientation, union membership, political affiliation, age, marital, or health status. We support workplaces free from physical, sexual, psychological, or verbal harassment or abuse.
- Training on Human rights/Women’s Empowerment, etc.
- Publications/mailers on Human Rights/Women’s empowerment.
- Health campaigns – Optometry/Dental/etc.
- Collaboration with organizations that support abused women.
- Ongoing technical training/mobility.
- Voluntarily paying for and improving workshop conditions – (Light/paint/tables/chairs/supplies/etc)
- Zero interest loans for personal emergencies.
- Dance/exercise classes.
Ensure the Rights of Children
Fair Trade means that all children have the right to security, education, and play. Throughout the INDIGENOUS supply chain, we respect and support the local laws and social norms. We do not support human trafficking and exploitative child labor. We continue to raise awareness on this important issue.
- Flexible schedules
Cultivate Environmental Stewardship
Fair Trade seeks to offer current generations the ability to meet their needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. We actively consider the implications of their decisions on the environment and promote the responsible stewardship of resources. We adhere to environmentally sustainable practices throughout the entire INDIGENOUS supply chain (including using: Organic certified cotton, GOTS processing, eco-dyes such as Oekotex 100, when possible the use of naturally occurring fiber colors to reduce the need for synthetic dyes.
Respect Cultural Identity
Fair Trade celebrates the cultural diversity of communities, while seeking to create positive and equitable change. We respect the development of products, practices, and organizational models based on indigenous traditions and techniques to sustain cultures and revitalize traditions. We balance market needs with producers’ cultural heritage.