San Francisco, CA-- Free2Work today announced the launch of App 2.0, the latest iteration of the powerful consumer information platform for iPhone and Android, increasing transparency in supply chains worldwide.
The mobile application equips consumers with valuable information on companies’ labor standards and production practices at the moment they need it most – while they shop.
The new and improved app now includes built-in barcode scanning technology enabling consumers to scan the barcode of a specific product and instantly gain access to information on a company’s efforts to eliminate forced and child labor in its supply chain.
The award-winning app currently offers information on more than 10,000 products by approximately 400 brands.
Scanning products allows users to view company ratings, browse industry-specific news articles, and receive fun factoids about that industry.
Additionally, a new share component within the app gives consumers the ability to share all this information with their social networks on Facebook and Twitter. Social media posts are linked via hashtags to the specific company’s profile page, empowering consumers to directly voice their concerns about the company’s production practices.
With the App 2.0 consumers will, for the first time, have the opportunity to directly participate in the research process by scanning items and inputting basic product information such as product name, UPC code, country of manufacture and certification label if applicable.
Judy Gearhart, ILRF’s Executive Director lauded the new tool, saying “Free2Work will drive greater transparency and encourage companies to look more seriously at labor rights not just at the final production stage, but also at the raw materials level – which is often where we find the most egregious abuses.”
Dave Batstone, founder and president of Not For Sale, the anti-human trafficking organization responsible for creating Free2Work, said: “Every product has a story. And I know that I am not the only person who does not want to wear people's tragedy. I do not want to consume their suffering with my morning cup of coffee. I would hope that everyone who touches a product that I buy had their lives enhanced by their participation in its production. Free2Work assigns a product a grade - A to F - based on the tangible steps that a company has taken to demonstrate that it has zero tolerance for forced labor in its supply chain.”
Equipped with this innovative tool, consumers have the ability to make informed purchasing decisions and pave the way for an increase in ethical consumption habits. The Free2Work App 2.0 has been featured on CNN, Al Jazeera, CBC National, Forbes India, The Guardian, and several other major publications.
“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Today, we ask, ‘If companies do ugly things, but consumers don’t hear of them, are the companies still guilty?’ [Free2Work] is collating and channeling supply chain and labor practices information from around the world and putting it right into your hands”– Rohin Dharmakumar, business reporter for Forbes India.
The consumer resource Free2Work (Free2Work.org), has rated several companies in the jewelry, chocolate, shoes, electronics, sports equipment, apparel, flowers and plants, and toys industries with plans to expand company ratings to several other industries.
Created by Not For Sale and supported by the International Labor Rights Forum, the Free2Work website will also undergo significant development in the coming months.
Free2Work is the only resource for consumers with a particular concern for forced and child labor. Using a comprehensive rating tool and in-depth research process, the project has evaluated and graded products in a variety of different industries, ranging from food products and garments to electronics and toys. Free2Work is continuously adding to the database of rated companies, further developing the rating tool, and expanding the breadth of product information available to consumers. As part of the project, Free2Work maintains open channels of communication with the companies being rated to ensure they are aware of their grades and understand that their individual ratings may improve provided they strengthen their policies to eliminate labor rights abuses. The website also has numerous features where users can share information and resources, find ways to take action, and offer feedback on the project.
About Not For Sale
The Not For Sale Campaign equips and mobilizes Smart Activists to deploy innovative solutions to re-abolish slavery in their own backyards and across the globe. Together, we can end slavery in our lifetime. www.notforsalecampaign.org
About International Labor Rights Forum
International Labor Rights Forum is an advocacy organization dedicated to achieving just and humane treatment for workers worldwide. www.laborrights.org
For more information on Free2Work, go to Free2Work.org or contact Julie Kaszton, Coordinator and Associate Researcher, Free2Work Julie [at] free2work.org ">Julie [at] free2work.org