IIECL’s Executive Director, Diane Mull, Named to International Cocoa Verification Board (ICVB)
A recently formed international board has been established as an independent body to establish a transparent and credible process to build pubic confidence that labor conditions in cocoa production meet international standards. The ICVB is mandated to create and implement the process by which government surveys of labor in cocoa production are validated. The Board will select, train and hire individual, independent verifers who wil analyze, critique and report on the robustness of the national labor surveys undertaken by the governments of Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire. This ground-breaking effort to identify and remediate the worst forms of child labor and forced adult labor in the cocoa sector is without parallel in agriculture.
Ms. Mull is one of nine individuals selected from among 250 people in 17 countries from NGOs, trade unions, universites and the United Nations that were consulted. The multi-stakeholder board structure is central to ensuring that a wide array ofviewpoints is heard. Members of the ICVB are from government, academia industry and civil society, whose collective expertise covers social science, and statistical research, child-centered research methodologies, labor rights, trafficking, agriculture (with particular focus on cocoa farming), gender studies, collective bargaining, and development economics.
Verite, a US-based nonprofit in social auditing, will serve as the ICVB’s Secretariat.