Approach

Corporate responsibility strategy

At Gildan, our vision of Making Apparel Better® isn’t just about the quality of our products. Making Apparel Better® refers to every aspect of how we do business, which means that it considers all impacts and all interactions we have with our stakeholders: from employees, customers, and shareholders, to the communities and environments touched by our operations. It demonstrates our goal of doing business in the best possible way, with responsibility and integrity at our core, so that we can create value in everything that we do.

Our priorities:

Caring for People
Caring for People

By owning our own facilities that produce our apparel, we are able to directly invest in the well-being, safety and development of our employees by creating work environments that are in line with the highest international standards.

Conserving the Environment
Conserving the Environment

Through investments in large-scale environmental innovations at our manufacturing facilities, we have implemented systems to maximize our use of natural resources, increase our access to renewable energy and treat our wastewater naturally.

Creating Stronger Communities
Creating Stronger Communities

We want to contribute to our communities and have a positive impact by helping them become stronger and more resilient, investing in local economic development, advancing access to education and promoting healthy and active lifestyles.

Materiality assessment

We have identified these issues through a formal materiality assessment (executed in late 2017) which encompasses areas of concern to our stakeholders that are the most important to them and that have the biggest potential to impact our business.

  • Human and labour rights
  • Occupational health and safety
  • Operational water and wastewater management
  • Chemical management
  • Energy and emissions management
Materiality_Assessment

More details on the Materiality Assessment methodology can be found in our 2017 report.

Sustainable development goals

The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity. They comprise 17 interconnected goals addressing the three dimensions of sustainable development – social, economic and environmental. We believe that we bear a responsibility to link our Genuine Responsibility™ initiatives to the SDGs and help support these goals and create a better world for all.

In 2017, we selected four Sustainable Development Goals to align with. We believe that our vertically-integrated business model and our Genuine Responsibility™ priorities give us the ability to have a positive impact on the following Goals:

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Why it matters to us

Quality education is the foundation for improving people’s lives and enhancing sustainable development. Investing in education helps build job and life skills and can have transformational impacts on communities, promoting socioeconomic stability and supporting communities as they escape poverty. Low literacy rates and lack of job skills in some geographic locations can create not only social challenges but also serve as an impediment to building a strong local workforce that can grow with Gildan.

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Why it matters to us

We understand that sustainable economic development is achieved through the creation of long-lasting, stable, and productive jobs. At Gildan, we truly value our employees and believe that by empowering them in their roles, encouraging their entrepreneurial spirit, and investing in their personal development and growth, we can realize business success as well.

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Why it matters to us

Innovation in industry and investments in infrastructure drive economic growth, create job opportunities, and empower communities. Gildan was founded on the vision that owning our factories, investing in technology, and pursuing continuous improvement is the best way to operate and to make apparel better.

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Why it matters to us

As awareness of global environmental and social issues grows, consumers are increasingly seeking out companies that are genuinely committed to positive social and environmental impacts. In parallel, investors are looking for companies with leading sustainability programs because they co-exist with strong operational performance and long-term financial success. Since the inception of our Company, our goal has been to operate the most cost- and resource-efficient manufacturing facilities, producing responsibly-made apparel and embedding social and environmental responsibility into the long term strategy of our business.