ABHMS personnel attend annual ICCR event
At ICCR’s annual event on Sept. 28 were the Rev. Dr. Clifford Johnson, president of ABHMS’ board of directors; the Rev. Rothangliani Chhangte, ABHMS senior associate, Strategic Initiatives and Relationships; ICCR 2017 Legacy Award recipient Sister Patricia Daly, OP, corporate responsibility representative for the Dominican Sisters of Caldwell, N.J.; Alma Hazboun, ABHMS controller; and Dave Moore Jr., ABHMS director of investments.
Proud of American Baptist Home Mission Societies’ (ABHMS) status as a founding member of the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility (ICCR), ABHMS personnel attended “Taking the High Road: the Business Case for a Just Workplace,” ICCR’s annual event Sept. 28 at Riverside Church, New York City.
Featured speaker was Saru Jaramayan, co-director of Restaurant Opportunity Center—known as ROC United—in New York City. Co-founded by Jaramayan and displaced World Trade Center workers after 9/11, ROC United organizes restaurant workers for workplace-justice campaigns, conducts research and policy work, partners with restaurants, and launches cooperatively-owned restaurants.
A panel discussion featured Kim Bobo, executive director, Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy; Magaly Licolli, executive director, Northwest Arkansas Workers’ Justice Center; Brent Wilton, director of Workplace Rights, The Coca-Cola Co.; and Beth Young, ESG consultant and attorney. Moderator was journalist and author Steven Greenhouse.
“What made the panel discussion interesting was the diverse background of panel members. They offered academic, journalistic, legal, corporate and nonprofit perspectives,” says Alma Hazboun, ABHMS controller. “They spotlighted the age-old issue of injustice to workers—they brought it to life.”
The Rev. Rothangliani Chhangte, ABHMS senior associate, Strategic Initiatives and Relationships, says she was particularly inspired by Jaramayan and Licolli.
“It was distressing to learn about some of the terrible working conditions in poultry plants, the large number of worker injuries, the lack of workers’ compensation and redress after an injury, and the stressful working conditions to which poultry workers are subjected in plants,” Chhangte says. “I was challenged to think of my own meat consumption and the sustainability of the current poultry businesses on animals and the environment. I will also support restaurants that pay the standard minimum wage to workers. While it is easy to call out businesses for their unjust labor practices, as consumers and investors, it is important that we support the businesses that do right by their employees, and challenge those with unjust labor practices to do better.”
The ICCR 2017 Legacy Award was presented to both Sister Patricia Daly, OP, corporate responsibility representative for the Dominican Sisters of Caldwell, N.J., and posthumously to the Rev. Michael Crosby, OFM Cap, of the Province of St. Joseph of the Capuchin Order. Daly is director emeritus of the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment. Crosby was former executive director of the Seventh Generation Interfaith Coalition for Responsible Investment.
Says Dave Moore Jr., ABHMS director of investments: “ICCR members and guests were able to celebrate the many socially responsible advocacy contributions of Father Michael Crosby and Sister Patricia Daly, recipients of this year’s legacy award for outstanding achievements in promoting justice and sustainability.”
Celebrating its 46th year, ICCR is the pioneer coalition of shareholder advocates who view the management of their investments as a catalyst for social change. Its 300 member organizations comprise faith communities, socially responsible asset managers, unions, pensions, nongovernmental organizations and other socially responsible investors with combined assets of over $200 billion. ICCR members engage hundreds of corporations annually in an effort to foster greater corporate accountability.
Additional information about ABHMS’ commitment to socially responsible investing is available online.