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Gildan launches 2018 sustainability report

This year’s report, prepared in accordance with the GRI Standards: Comprehensive option, highlights the company’s 2018 results.

11th September 2019

Knitting Industry
 |  Montreal

Knitted Outerwear, Sports/​Activewear

“We are pleased with the progress that we are making to improve people’s lives in the regions where we operate, to continually implement innovative environmental solutions to positively impact our footprint and to improve the livelihood of our neighbouring communities,” said Claudia Sandoval, Vice-President, Corporate Citizenship.

“Part of the advantages of owning and operating the facilities where our clothes are made, is that we have the power to provide good, stable jobs and benefits, and safe and healthy work environments for our employees. In addition, by running our own operations we can ensure that our products are made through processes that are respectful of the environment. As we continue this journey, we remain focused on making tangible progress on the material issues important to our stakeholders and continue to strengthen our sustainability commitment by aligning our efforts with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.”

Conserving the environment

One of Gildan’s primary areas of focus has been to optimise its energy consumption through investments in biomass steam generation systems and other innovative energy initiatives. The company’s biomass systems in Honduras and the Dominican Republic generate steam and thermal energy from burning agricultural and production waste in highly efficient boilers. The biomass systems, in combination with other initiatives, have allowed the company to generate 40% of its total energy needs through renewable sources in 2018.

During 2018, the company also made progress towards improving its landfill waste intensity compared to 2017. Gildan’s management says it remains committed and focused on continuing to implement new technologies and further improve its processes to reach its 2020 environmental goals.

Caring for people

In addition to fair compensation, Gildan contributes to a higher standard of living for its manufacturing employees by providing benefits that help to enhance their quality of life, such as 24-hour-a-day, seven-day-a-week access to free on-site primary care medical clinics. Furthermore, in 2018, the company invested more than US$ 13.6 million in supplemental benefits, such as subsidized meals, free transportation, vaccines, medicine and vitamins. It also offered more than 5.1 million hours of training to its employees.

Creating strong communities

Gildan continues to create many business opportunities in the regions it operates in by choosing local suppliers for the procurement of various goods and services required for the production of its products. In 2018, the company’s total expenditures for materials and services with local suppliers in Central America and the Caribbean Basin were close to US$ 200 million.

Gildan is also an active member of the community through its engagement programmes, which aim to enrich people’s quality of life by advancing access to education, promoting healthy and active lifestyle, protecting the environment and fostering entrepreneurship. In 2018, Gildan invested close to US$ 2 million in community giving.

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