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Apparel and accessories supplier for colleges and resorts earns Fair Labor Association accreditation

WASHINGTON – The Fair Labor Association announced today that its board of directors voted to accredit Lakeshirts/Blue 84’s social compliance program after the company demonstrated in a lengthy review that it has policies and practices in place to identify and remediate unfair labor practices in its global supply chain. Lakeshirts, headquartered in Detroit Lakes, Minn., has been an FLA affiliate since 2010 and began its implementation period for FLA accreditation in 2012. The company produces apparel for resorts and universities across the United States.

“Students take enormous pride in their universities, and they want to know that the collegiate clothing and products they purchase are not made with sweatshop labor,” said Sharon Waxman, president and CEO of the FLA. “We commend Lakeshirts/Blue 84 for committing to promote and protect high labor standards for the workers who make the clothing they sell.”   

The FLA accreditation report noted that Lakeshirts’ social compliance program included the following strengths:

  • Lakeshirts’ corporate social responsibility committee, comprised of nine members from teams across the company and the executive team, facilitates broad cross-departmental collaboration on social compliance issues
  • Lakeshirts’ comprehensive monitoring guidance outlines clear expectations for third-party auditors
  • Lakeshirts’ method of ordering blank goods for embroidery and screen-printing in one centralized location encourages responsible purchasing practices
  • Lakeshirts demonstrates engagement with employees at the U.S. factory owned by the company, and within the community of Detroit Lakes, Minn., where it is headquartered

“This accreditation is something that aligns completely with our values as an organization, and reflects how we’ve always felt about how we should do business,” said Mike Hutchinson, co-CEO for Lakeshirts/Blue 84. “To have gone through the rigorous process and to ultimately be accredited by FLA is the highest confirmation of how important those values are.”

The FLA is the only organization of its kind to which companies and suppliers commit to meeting the standards of regular review and assessment of corporate systems that support workers’ rights. FLA accreditation is the gold standard for a systems-level approach to human rights compliance and social responsibility. Companies must regularly assess supply chain production facilities for adherence to international labor standards and pursue continuous improvement efforts to address conditions for workers to achieve accreditation.


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