Fair Trade policies have been instrumental in enriching the lives of artisans and producers the world over, ensuring positive and sustainable growth. One of the most important groups to receive these benefits have been working mothers, who use various Fair Trade programs to ensure their children are taken care of, and able to stay in school longer thanks to their parents increased job stability
1. Maternity Leave
Before we can support working moms, we need to let them become moms first! One of our strict Fair Trade principles was the right to full maternity leave for all employees who give birth while working with us. By allowing the mother a chance to recover and bond with her new child without worrying about making ends meet, which results in a strong and mutual sense of trust and loyalty with our employees, a wonderful work environment for all parties is created. Our mission has always been to help build a thriving community, and that work starts with a helping hand to the new generations who will carry the torch when we’re done.
2. Doctor’s Visits
With frequent Doctor’s visits a part of our Fair Trade Designation, new moms can take advantage of this program to ensure their health is carefully taken care of, allowing them to remain a vital pillar of support within their family and the community as a whole. They can also rest easy knowing that their ability to provide for their family will not be disturbed, which means their children can focus on studies to enrich their own lives for the future.
3. Better Pay
By making over double the minimum wage in Ethiopia, our employees can take charge of their finances, which in turn allows their children to continue their educations beyond what was traditionally possible in the past, where children often left school to work, which stunted their future potential. Without having to worry about making ends meet, our employees can allow their children to flourish, and enjoy much more family bonding time that might have been previously filled with extra employment. Both the children and parents will benefit immensely from their strengthened relationships, which spreads throughout the community for mutual enrichment.
4. Gender Equality
A Fair Trade workplace is by definition a gender-equal workplace, where each role is paid equally across genders. Not only is this the bare minimum of being fair and just, it is sound economic and developmental policy. When women and men earn equally for their families, it increases their own safety net and reduces total reliance on one or the other to support the family. This has the added benefit of showing young girls that they are equally as capable of working hard and earning a living, which will stick with them as they age and quickly become the status quo as the newer generations begin to direct their society. In economic terms, targeting women with Fair Trade benefits has shown to be the most efficient and effective way of combating poverty in a given region, and it taps into the fullest potential of great minds and hard workers to continue to build a thriving community.
While we at Oliberté are constantly working on appreciating and encouraging our entire workforce, Mother’s Day is always a great day to step back and compass our efforts, and measure the results of fair and equitable treatment of our employees. Our continued success through your support has given us the ability to expand these programs to cover over 120 employees, and we will constantly endeavor to continue our growth and influence to spread these policies worldwide. Thanks to all the moms who made it possible in the first place!