Conscious Diamonds

Posted by & filed under Conscious Businesses, Conscious Consumers, What You Can Do.

We can spread joy as conscious consumers…

If you buy diamonds, and care that they are made ethically (that is, without funding violent rebel groups, or torture or rape by militaries) please log on to these links and share them with your friends.

http://www.brilliantearth.com/howtobuy-conflict-free-checklist/

http://www.brilliantearth.com/buy-conflict-free-diamonds/

While there are companies which say they enforce standards by the Kimberly Process, this is what Charmian  Gooch, a Founding Director of Global Witness, a human rights group has said:

“Nearly nine years after the Kimberley Process was launched, the sad truth is that most consumers still cannot be sure where their diamonds come from, nor whether they are financing armed violence or abusive regimes.”

Here is more information on Global Witness leaving the Kimberly Process.

Brilliant Earth is a company that goes beyond the Kimberly Process in acquiring its diamonds.

Lab-grown diamonds are another alternative. Max Gordon is an option in Singapore.

Or perhaps this is a time to give up on diamonds altogether and channel the money to worthy social change projects or investing in your personal and spiritual development? :)

 

2 Responses

  1. Debbie Fordyce February 5, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    Many thanks for the information about how to buy ethical diamonds. We can also find sites about ethical foods, electronics, cosmetics and fashion. But what about the ethics of construction? If we learn that workers are over-worked and barely paid on the construction projects, and that accidents or deaths resulted from that project, how should we respond? If we want to register our opposition to the exploitation of workers employed in the building of high-rise buildings, expressway over and underpasses, roads and underground sewage and electrical systems, we can’t boycott the infrastructure the way we can blood diamonds. Any suggestions?

    Reply
    • Vadivu February 6, 2012 at 4:50 pm

      Debbie, thank you for raising this important issue.

      When employees are well, it also benefits the company/organisation.

      My suggestions would be:
      - to take note of contractors who are treating employees well, in any way, and create a list. Conscious consumers/businesses can start to use services of people in this list. However this can take time to do comprehensively and it needs one coordinating person/body and perhaps some way of checking too.

      - to use any influential positions we have with organisations/companies(the employers) to support more humane practices with workers who work for their contractors and sub-contractors. What checks and balances could be enhanced to ensure legislation and guidelines are followed? What guidelines could be created that go beyond legislation?

      - where we get opportunities, to support and encourage leaders and professionals in these sectors to look out for the welfare of workers and help improve systems from within.

      - when we notice something that could be improved, we raise it respectfully and peacefully to the relevant parties whose details are posted on boards when construction is taking place. I know someone who wrote to a contractor about workers working late at night near his home and how their welfare is compromised by this. The contractor responded positively and reported that they had asked the sub-contractor to not make workers work so late in future.

      - to notice which contractors are building a project you’re interested in. I know someone who made the final decision to get a flat because it was built by Straits Construction which ferries workers by buses. He said it wasn’t a major factor but it was the small final push.

      - MOM puts out a list of contractors with demerit points. At the minimum, we could avoid contractors on that list if we so wish.
      http://www.mom.gov.sg/foreign-manpower/employment-agencies/legislation-licensing-criteria/Pages/demerit-points-system.aspx

      I’m sure these suggestions are not enough to address the issue as a whole but I think they could be starting points for people who are keen.

      Reply

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