Montreal, Tuesday, November 17th, 2020 – Gildan Activewear Inc. (GIL: TSX and NYSE) announced today that it has been listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index. This marks Gildan’s eighth consecutive year of inclusion on the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI), recognizing the Company’s success and commitment in areas related to Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) practices. Gildan is the only apparel manufacturer to be included in the North American index.
“We are again pleased that Gildan has been included on the DJSI and that our scores reflect our continuous commitment to high achievement levels in all areas of ESG,” said Glenn Chamandy, President and CEO at Gildan. “Our eighth consecutive inclusion is the result of the hard work and dedication from our teams around the world to our vision of Gildan as a leader in ethical and sustainable apparel manufacturing. Despite a challenging global environment for all in 2020, I am particularly proud that Gildan continues to be recognized for its ability to manufacture responsibly, thanks to our unique vertically-integrated business model that allows us to care for our people, conserve the environment, and create stronger communities,” he continued.
“We congratulate Gildan for being included in the DJSI North America Index,” said Manjit Jus, Global Head of ESG Research and Data, S&P Global. “A DJSI distinction is a reflection of being a sustainability leader in your industry. With a record number of companies participating in the 2020 Corporate Sustainability Assessment and more stringent rules for inclusion this year, this sets your company apart and rewards your continued commitment to people and planet."
This year, Gildan was able to increase its scores in all dimensions and showed significant improvement in areas related to labor practice indicators, operational eco-efficiency, and risk and crisis management. Gildan also achieved top score in the corporate governance, codes of business conduct, environmental reporting, social reporting, and corporate citizenship and philanthropy categories this year.
In 2019, Gildan launched an updated Global Environmental & Energy Policy, which focuses on strengthening its environment and energy performance as one of its key priorities while embracing a proactive culture through the implementation of initiatives that build on its practices, guaranteeing that its environmental footprint is among the best in the industry. To ensure that the Company’s policy is upheld at all its operations and that it is in compliance with all applicable environmental laws and regulations in the countries where it operates, the Company has a comprehensive Environmental Management System (EMS). The EMS allows the Company to evaluate its procedures for managing critical areas such as water use and wastewater discharge, energy generation and consumption, chemical handling and storage, raw materials selection, waste generation, biodiversity protection, emissions and spill control. Over the years, Gildan has invested significantly in systems and technologies to closely measure, monitor, and optimize the operational sustainability of its facilities.
Gildan is committed to adopting the best labour practices and working conditions to ensure that the human rights and dignity of all its employees and those of its business partners are respected. A such, in 2019, Gildan updated its Human Rights Policy to include the Company’s most important social issues and identify, understand, and address actual or potential adverse human rights risks in connection with its operations and extended supply chain. In every location where the Company operates, Gildan offers fair wages, competitive benefits, safe and healthy work environments, and professional and personal development opportunities. Gildan also has rigorous systems in place, like its grievance mechanisms, to identify, prevent, and mitigate the risk of human rights violations in its supply chain.
Code of Business Conduct
Gildan has a comprehensive framework governing corporate compliance policies including a Code of Ethics, a Code of Conduct, and an Anti-Corruption Policy, amongst others. The Gildan Code of Conduct guides the Company’s activities wherever it operates and is aligned with internationally recognized standards such as the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the Fair Labor Association (FLA). The Company has several processes and training in place to increase awareness and compliance with its codes across the organization and expects its business partners to adhere to the same ethical and business conduct standards that it has adopted internally.
Created jointly by S&P Dow Jones Indices and SAM, the Dow Jones Sustainability Index family is a best-in-class benchmark for sustainable business practices which are critical to generating long-term shareholder value. The Dow Jones Sustainability North America Index was established in September 2005 to track the performance of companies from Canada and the United States that lead the field in terms of corporate sustainability.
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