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Conflict Minerals Statement

Ad Hoc Committee on Socially Responsible Practices ::
Statement on Conflict Free Minerals


Ohio University's Values Statement embraces the Five C's that define our identity and outline our collective promise: Community, Character, Civility, Citizenship and Commitment. Membership in the OHIO community means being involved and responsible citizens, locally and globally. OHIO citizens give more than they take, as responsible citizens both on and off campus who work for the public good. Our collective ability to fulfill this vision requires socially responsible management of our resources to ensure ethical economic decisions for the benefit of our students and our community, including the many lives we touch across the globe.

Given these commitments, we embrace the opportunity to practice responsible and ethical stewardship of our resources by exercising the authority and responsibility to consider ethical factors when establishing university financial policies and practices. We will not hesitate to examine seriously, and when appropriate to reassess our procurement and investment practices, in cases where a company's activities or policies plausibly cause social injury and where our own actions and priorities in relation to such companies could have a material or symbolic effect in alleviating or opposing such injury.

With these values in mind, Ohio University recognizes the humanitarian crisis taking place in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the role of conflict minerals as one of the primary drivers for this violence. Given our significant annual expenditures for electronics products that likely contain these minerals, we recognize our own responsibility and indirect link to the crisis.

Ohio University is aware that "conflict-free" products are not yet widely available. Given the current circumstances, we are making a best-effort commitment to favor the procurement of verifiably Congo-sourced conflict-free products. We welcome suppliers who belong to the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC), a global organization devoted to improving social and environmental conditions in electronics supply chains (http://www.eicc.info/). The EICC requires its members to follow a Code of Conduct that provides guidance in five critical areas of corporate social responsibility performance – labor, health and safety, environment, management system and ethics.

As an institution that makes significant annual expenditures for electronics products that likely contain these minerals, we call on all electronics companies with whom we do business to clean up their supply chains and source responsibly from legitimate Congolese mines. We also call on all members of the OHIO community to consider companies' progress toward creating certifiably Congo-sourced conflict-free products when making personal purchasing decisions, and to join us in communicating to companies their desire to purchase products that were sourced and created responsibly. We will monitor future developments in this area and continue to evaluate our purchasing practices to ensure that they are consistent with the goals set forth in this Statement.


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