Author: xertifix

The SZ author Björn Stephan receives the Axel Springer Prize
For his report on child labor in the Indian gravestone industry

2015-12-04 Granitsteinbruch

In the report, Björn Stephan and Benjamin Pütter have shown that Indian children have to work for the production of tombstones. These are gravestones that have been found in German cemeteries. This fact of the child labor for Indian gravestones, which can be sold also here in Germany, is continually denied by the local industry.

The regional government of NRW has recently published a scientific study on the topic, which states that “in addition to the legal formulations in the BestG NRW, it must be noted that in India in the production of natural stoneone must assume the existence of the worst forms of child labor …”

Congratulations to Björn Stephan for the prize!

Siehe: Axel Springer Prize

Siehe SZ-Beitrag Die Kindergräber

New scientific study commissioned by the Ministry of Health NRW

2015-12-04 GranitsteinbruchThe study clearly shows that in India, the worst forms of child labor are also to be found in the natural stone sector. This also applies to the Vietnam and Philippines countries. For China, child labor is involved in various economic sectors. In addition, large quantities of natural stone are imported from India to China and then (if necessary further processed) exported to Germany. It is to be assumed that a part of the natural stones purchased from China originally came from India.

Please refer: Ministerium für Arbeit, Gesundheit und Soziales des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen (MAGS):

Report on imported natural stones at Frontal 21

“China exports more than one million tons of granite stones annually to Germany. These are sold very favorably among other things in Do-It-Yourself Markets, for example as paving stones, wall cladding or kitchen plates. However, hardly a buyer knows that the granite stones are often produced under conditions that are harmful to the health, sometimes even life-threatening. This is attributable to inspection reports and pictures from Chinese quarries and processing companies, which were presented to Frontal 21 and are now being published for the first time. In Germany, however, only one of the six major DIY stores, toom, is active against such violations of the international workplace safety requirements. […]” (Extract from the ZDF announcement of the TV Broadcasting)

Will be broadcast on Tuesday, 14th March 2017 at 9pm

Please refer: Cheap granite from the Do-it-yourself Market

XertifiX and toom pull together

As a first DIY store chain in Germany, toom Baumarkt has certified natural stones from XertifiX. We are delighted that consumers will be able to buy certified natural stones in DIY stores all over Germany. If you want to pave the garage entrance, the terrace or garden paths with a natural conscience, now he / she has the choice!

Finally, there is a new legal opinion, which takes into account and takes due account of changes in the law at EU and federal level. The report draws attention to the reform of the German Public Procurement Act, which entered into force on 18 April 2016. This has been implemented by the EU directive on the award of 2014.

Key findings of the report:

  1. It can be social and environmental aspects in the award of public contracts without issues to consider: This can also be done at different levels:
    • As a performance description, e.g. social innovations (see 34) [it is pointed out in the Opinion that there are alternative legal interpretations on this point]
    • As a softer supplementary criterion (s. 34)
    • As an implementation condition, e.g. to sanction non-compliance (s. 34)
  2. It follows that it is not necessary to accept self-explanations. On the contrary, proof of an independent third party may be explicitly required.
  3. Specifically, a specific quality mark is allowed to be required as proof if the public procurement body accepts all requirements of this quality mark.
  4. The federal states can obligate the public procurement bodies to demand certain social standards, but only at the level of the performance description and the implementation condition (S. 37f.)


It is very gratifying that, with Dr. Krönke’s report, a new reading of the legal room to manoeuvre for public procurement is finally to be found!

Please refer: Rechtsgutachten von Dr. Christoph Krönke

The Federal Government compares the seals of different product groups on its Internet portals. At the end of 2016, the Natural Stone product group was also launched. If a seal fulfills the minimum requirements, the comprehensive assessment will examine a catalog of several hundred criteria. From the examination of these criteria, a score is obtained.

For XertifiX, it says: “Good choice, this seal fulfills our credibility and social requirements.” We are delighted that XertifiX has done so well with its two seals and is recommended by the federal government.

It is the great merit of the Federal Government to invest a great deal of work, money and resources in informing consumers and purchasers about the numerous seals and to bring clarity into the diversity of the seals.

Siehe: Our XertifiX standard label on seal clarity

Siehe: Our XertifiX PLUS label on seal clarity

 

2015-12-04 GranitsteinbruchOn the occasion of the November holidays, the Jugend Eine Welt draws attention to the fact that the working conditions in Indian tombstone quarries are still catastrophic: “UNICEF has repeatedly pointed out that child labor in Indian quarries occurs alarmingly Don Bosco is currently working in a remote quarry in the Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh, where 64 children, including 37 boys and 19 girls, are from poor migrant families. ”

Siehe: Jugend Eine Welt – Don Bosco Aktion Österreich

Bavarian municipalities use amendment

Grabsteine SMALLAn increasing number of municipalities in Bavaria are using the new authorization law in Bavaria and are forbidding grave stones from child labor in their cemeteries. Finally, the municipalities in Munich, Freising, Regensburg, Zwiesing or Gilching have changed their cemetery records or are preparing such changes in the municipal council.
 
It was not until December 2015 that the Süddeutsche Zeitung had shown in research on the ground in South India that there were child labor in grave quarries, which also supply Germany. At the time, the import sector had responded succinctly to the fact that it was a single black sheep – without even mentioning the well-known structural problem of child labor in India. The latest efforts by India to combat child labor are also being criticized throughout the world and considered as unsuitable.

Siehe: tz zu München
Siehe: Süddeutsche Zeitung zu Freising
Siehe: Mittelbayerische Zeitung zu Regensburg
Siehe: Süddeutsche Zeitung zu Gilching
Siehe: Augsburger Zeitung zu Wertingen

Grabsteine (2)
“In the future, Bavarian cities and municipalities will be able to pronounce a ban on the use of grave stones from exploitative child labor for their cemeteries. The state parliament unanimously passed a bill of the state government.” [weiter…]

Please refer: Fight against child labor
Please refer: Law draft
You can find an example of a sample application here.

On 1 July 2016, the Federal Government awarded the Federal Law on Procurement to the new federal law of the federal government which came into effect in April. A draft law of the Ministry of Economic Affairs was passed on 7 June by the Lower Saxony Landtag.

The decisive passages are:
“(1) When awarding supply, works or services is to work out that the scope of paragraph no goods are the subject of performance, obtained or produced the set in disregard of the core labor standards of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) minimum requirements are. […]
(2) The governing body shall determine by regulation the product groups or manufacturing procedures to be applied to paragraph 1 and the minimum content of the contractual provisions referred to in the first sentence of paragraph 1. The Regulation shall apply to certifications and verifications, as well as the contractual arrangements for checks and contractual penalties. ”

Please refer: Niedersächsisches Tariftreue- und Vergabegesetz – NTVergG
Please refer: Niedersächsische Kernarbeitsnormenverordnung – NKernVO
Please refer: Erklärung über die Vorlage von Nachweisen
Please refer: Servicestelle zum Niedersächsischen Tariftreue- und Vergabegesetz