An NGO Striving for Better Working Conditions for Football Stitchers
 
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      Talon Sports  
        Talon Sports is a large-scale producer employing around 1200 factory workers and contract stitchers.
    Production is split 50/50 between sports clothing and sports balls - mainly footballs but also rugby balls, Basket balls and indoor and beach volley balls that are assembled at more than 50 stitching centers. It is currently the only supplier of sports balls to the UK Fair trade market.
    In early 1997, Talon had an order of promotional balls for "Dunkin Donut". This order was to be manufactured under special conditions, which were to be verified by a customer designated monitoring agency. On successful shipment of order the facts and excellent compliance of Talon with socio-commercial standards was no more secret in the US market. Visit of Dr. Dan Mccurry of child Labour right fund was also a result of promotion campaign of Dunkin Donut.
    During this period people from Fair Trade e. V. Germany that were already in trade of food items, planned to trade balls manufactured under Fair Trade conditions. This followed up by visit of Dr. Martin Kunz, a Director of Fair Trade to Sialkot for survey of companies having capacity and commitment to comply with the social and international quality standards. After having assessed a number of companies/firms he visited Talon, saw production facility, talked to the management and finally decided to go for partnership. Agreement, criteria and procedures were drafted following the guidelines of UN resolutions and signed up in late December 1997. First order under the agreement was received in January 1998 from COOP for 28008 balls.
     
      Partners Agreement  
      Transfair Japan was the first LI to raise the issue of Fairly Traded balls in 1997.The issue was then addressed by Transfair in the same year. It was Fair Trade e.V. (TransFair Italy/coop-Italy; gepa and EFTA members), that in 1998, developed the first Fair Trade criteria and trading links for sport balls.
    The agreement was Signed between Fair Trade e.V. Germany and Talon Sports, Sialkot on the issues majorly as:
     
      Better Working Conditions for all Talon Workers:  
      Provision of basic necessities for working places including clean fresh drinking water, adequate lighting system, wash room, ventilation and cleaning arrangements etc.  
      Exclusion of middle men:  
      To ensure the payment of full amount of wages to the workers, the manufacturer partner should establish a system with no intermediaries.  
      No Discrimination against women (25%) and minorities:  
      Manufacturing partner will provide equal opportunities to female and minority workers.  
      Child Labour free production (14 Years):  
      No worker will be employed below the age of 14 years.  
      Improvement in stitchers community through NGOs:  
      There will be perpetual activities for gradual improvements in the workers community. Schemes for education, health and income generation will be designed and implemented. This has the basic idea to rehabilitate the effected families and eventually to prevent the intervention of children in work.  
      Environment issues (lamination, printing, bags, cutting)  
      Environment in general and environment on work places in specific will be addressed according to acceptable human standards. In lamination and panel printing area the concentration of Ammonia and other chemicals will be reduces by introducing heavy ventilation system. In cutting area noise protecting equipment are required. To avoid the pollution proper handling of waste poly bags will be made possible.  
      Allocation of FT premium:  
      Amount of Fair Trade premium its breakup in social security/social protection program and community development program was agreed for all present types of balls.  
      Monitoring (Documentation):  
      Manufacturer will maintain record of its stitching centers, number of stitchers present at each center, age, start date of fair trade order and number of balls stitched by each center with date stamp. This information will be used by the independent monitoring agency for third party monitoring.  
      Developed by: FRAMES Tech.   ©Copyrights Talon Fair Trade 1998 - 2017. All rights reserved.