Our approach

Genuine Responsibility® is the overarching framework of programs, policies, and practices that governs Gildan’s operations and business in all areas related to environmental stewardship, social impacts, and governance practices.

Developed over the last 15+ years, this comprehensive framework serves to guide the decisions we make, the actions we take, and the future we envision for our Company across three central pillars:

  1. Caring for our people
  2. Conserving the environment
  3. Creating stronger communities




2019 focus

In 2019, we focused on making progress towards fulfilling our 2020 targets towards these three pillars, as set in 2015, which included the reduction of our environmental impacts in the areas of energy, landfill waste, water, and GHG emissions intensity. We have also enhanced health and safety, human and labour rights, and compliance with our Company standards through further advancing our global programs and deploying various trainings for both our Company-owned and third-party facilities. 


We believe that high standards of corporate governance are an important factor in the overall success of our Company. We strive to foster a culture of integrity, accountability, and transparency throughout our organization – with a tone from the top. Our governance program focuses on the following key elements: ethics, anti-corruption, code of conduct, risk management and data protection. 

Caring for our people

2019 highlights

As one of the world’s largest apparel manufacturers, we embrace our responsibility to treat our employees with respect and provide them with rewarding, safe, and healthy work environments. We strive to foster a company culture where employees are valued and empowered to share in our success.


of our textile and sewing facilities tested the FLA’s living wage methodology


 of employees are covered by collective bargaining agreements


of management positions and 18% of top leadership position are held by women


of Gildan employees globally are represented by formal Health & Safety Committees


Invested in supplemental benefits, including free onsite medical health care at all our non-U.S. locations, vaccination and medicine programs, parental leave, financial assistance, subsidized meals, and free transportation


medical consultations provided, and 15,351 vaccines administered free of charge at on-site clinics


of training provided to employees

Conserving the environment

2019 highlights

We have always looked to minimize waste, optimize resources and pursue continuous improvements in every aspect of our operations. Initially driven as cost saving initiatives, we now see the direct connection. Our investments in sustainable solutions and innovative technologies are not only driving reductions of our impacts but also delivering long-term financial success. 


of the energy consumed in all our facilities came from renewable sources 


of our raw material suppliers completed all updated requirements, confirming their full compliance with Gildan’s Restricted Substances Code of Practice (RSCP) 


of non-hazardous waste recycled or repurposed 


reduction in quantity of boxes purchased per kg of production for one of our brands resulting from the implementation of a packaging reduction program 

Creating stronger communities

2019 highlights

We believe we have a responsibility to be an active participant in the communities where we operate, extending well beyond the employment opportunities we create. Our large scale, global reach, and commitment to operating responsibly position us well to deliver positive and sustainable impacts for creating stronger and healthier communities.

Over $1.5M

in community investments through cash donations or in-kind giving (product, service, or other non-financial donations)


Over 26,300 school kits and supplies donated to children in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Honduras


Gildan employees volunteered across the various regions where we operate

Over $260M

in total expenditures for materials and services with local suppliers in Bangladesh, Central America and the Caribbean basin 


of all managers globally are local talent 

SROI study

In 2019, we conducted a Social Return on Investment (SROI) study to identify the impact  of our community investment in Central America.


Gildan's Genuine Responsibility® program was recognized by many well-established organizations in the past year, including: 

  • Dow Jones Sustainability Index
  • Fair Labor Association (FLA) re-accreditation
  • SAM Sustainability Yearbook
  • Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP)
  • Fundahrse 
  • MSCI
  • Fashion Transparency Index

ESG Report

Interested in our ESG strategy, numbers and details? Read Gildan's complete Genuine Responsibility® 2019 ESG report for the whole overview.