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The Partnership

Partnership Profile

The Partnership for Sustainable Textiles advocates for a social, environmental, and corruption-free textile and garment industry - one that respects the rights of all workers, protects the climate and the environment, and operates with integrity and within planetary boundaries.

To achieve its goals, the Textile Partnership places a special focus on the implementation of human rights and environmental due diligence in Germany, Europe and worldwide. To enable member companies to meet their due diligence obligations (as required, among other things, by the German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act), the Textile Partnership has developed the Review Process as a sector-specific implementation framework and reporting format.

It also initiates joint projects in production countries (Collective Engagement), for example on living wages, organic cotton, wastewater management and grievance mechanisms. Finally, it is a platform for learning and dialogue (Mutual Support) and offers working groups, workshop, guides and other support material on various topics.

As a multi-stakeholder initiative, the Textile Partnership brings together companies, associations, non-governmental organizations, standards organizations, trade unions and the German government. In addition, the Textile Partnership cooperates with European and international initiatives in order to disseminate best practices and increase the leverage for its commitment.

What guides us?

The Textile Partnership aligns its work with international agreements and guidelines that define the principles of social, environmental and economic sustainability and set the framework for corporate due diligence and responsibility.

The Partnership objectives concerning social and human rights issues are based in particular on the ILO Conventions, the UN Principles on Business and Human Rights, and the OECDGuidelines for Multinational Enterprises. The environmental and climate objectives as well as those for sustainable natural fibre production are also based on international standards . In implementing its goals, the Partnership is strongly oriented towards the recommendations of the OECD on the implementation of corporate due diligence in the garment and footwear sector:

How do we work?

Partnership members gear towards substantial improvements along global textile supply chains; through individual responsibility, collective engagement on the ground and mutual support. In order to achieve a broader impact and to use synergies, the Textile Partnership cooperates with relevant organisations and initiatives in the sector.

The Review Process represents the individual commitment of companies in the Textile Partnership to take responsibility for sustainability in their supply chain. The aim of the Review Process is to effectively prevent and mitigate the most serious social, environmental and compliance risks in the value chain.

The Partnership relies on collaborative projects: Initiatives for ecological, social and economic improvements in selected production countries can drive decisive changes in the textile sector and improve the situation on the ground.

Five Partnership Initiatives are currently in the implementation phase; on improving working conditions in the textile sector in India, on grievance mechanisms, organic cotton, wastewater management and living wages.

The Partnership for Sustainable Textiles also sees itself as a a platform for knowledge exchange, learning and dialogue (Mutual Support). Partnership members value the dialogue within their own group, but also with other groups of actors. In webinars and workshops, expert and project groups, and with the help of tools and support material, they prepare information and experiences and share them with other members. An internal platform enables the Partnership members to inform each other about upcoming events and topics, to network and to coordinate the work in project groups.

The Partnerships' work is supported by the Partnership Secretariat. On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, the Secretariat is operated by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.

FAQ

The Partnership for Sustainable Textiles is a multi-stakeholder initiative with members from the private sector (companies and associations), trade unions, non-governmental organisations, standard organisations and the German Federal Government. Together, they are committed to a social, ecological and corruption-free textile and clothing industry. In order to achieve its goals, the Textiles Partnership places particular emphasis on the implementation of corporate due diligence obligations in Germany, Europe and worldwide. Here you will find further information on the Textiles Partnership.

In light of the complex global challenges facing the textile and garment industry, real change requires the participation of all stakeholders. As a multi-stakeholder initiative, the Textiles Partnership therefore brings together companies in the textile and garment industry and trade with other actors who are active on the subject of sustainable textiles – including associations, non-governmental organisations, trade unions and standard organisations. The German Federal Government is represented by three Federal Ministries. In addition, scientific institutions or federal authorities can become advisory members. Further information on the membership

Companies need to analyse and mitigate social, environmental and corruption risks in their supply chains. Because certain risks occur particularly frequently in the textile and clothing industry, they reflect the topics on which the members of the Textiles Partnership work together. The eleven sector risks include child and forced labour, gender-based violence, wages, the use of chemicals, environmental and climate protection. In addition, the Partnership members address overarching issues such as supply chain transparency, grievance mechanisms, circular economy, natural and man-made fibres. On this page you will find information on sector risks, due diligence, SDGs and other issuesthat the Partnership and its members deal with with varying degrees of intensity.

No membership fees are charged for a membership in the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles. Costs may arise for assessment meetings as part of the Review Process as well as for participation in Partnership initiatives and projects in production countries.

The Textiles Partnership and the Green Button are based on the same fundamental international agreements of the UN on compliance with human and workers' rights, environmental protection and the prevention of corruption, as well as on corresponding EU guidelines and initiatives and on the recommendations of the OECD. Both strive for the consistent implementation of human rights and ecological due diligence obligations. While the Textiles Partnership pursues this goal as a multi-stakeholder initiative with learning, dialogue and reporting formats, information, joint measures in production countries and a broad international cooperation network, the Green Button is a state meta-label for which companies must fulfil. Through active membership in the Partnership, companies can prepare for possible certification with the Green Button. Further information on the Green Button website and on other (textile) certifications and labels on Siegelklarheit.

As the first point of contact for all companies that want to assume their ecological and human rights responsibility throughout the entire supply chain, the Textiles Partnership offers a broad network and support. Among other things, it is a platform for learning and dialogue: the members network within and with the other stakeholder groups. They share their knowledge and work together on best practices, for example in webinars and workshops, expert and working groups as well as with the help of tools and support materials. In addition, the members join forces in Partnership initiatives and projects and, thus achieve improvements and progress in the producing countries that would hardly be possible on their own.

In 2021, the German Federal Government passed the Supply Chain Care Obligations Act (LkSG). The law lays down requirements for the due diligence obligations of companies. The Textiles Partnership is also committed to the implementation of due diligence obligations and is guided by international standards. With the Review Process, the Textiles Partnership has developed an implementation framework and a reporting format for corporate due diligence. Companies in the Textiles Partnership, for example, are therefore familiar with the systematic analysis of their risks and are therefore well prepared for the requirements of the law. However, a membership in the Textiles Partnership and participation in the Review Process are not proof of compliance with the legal requirements. On the homepage of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development you will find further information on the Supply Chain Act.