I’m proud of USC (my alma mater) for taking steps to help ensure companies working on behalf of the school creating USC branded products are socially responsible. I hope that other universities follow SC’s lead.
USC has implemented a strict new requirement of vendors supplying USC licensed products for retail: Conduct an audit or lose your contract with the university.The guidelines â?? among the strongest in the nation for higher education â?? are meant to ensure that companies with which the university does business are socially responsible in regards to workersâ?? rights.
Prior to implementing this new initiative, USC had about 250 vendors on its licensed retail product rolls â?? creating everything from USC-branded mustard (for tail-gate parties) to clothing at the USC bookstore. This past summer, the university dropped 88 vendors after the firms failed to sign agreements to produce independent audits to ensure decent conditions for workers creating the products.