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Byline: Ross Tucker
Social Responsibility Aids Survival Strategies
Properly integrated and fully funded corporate social responsibility programs are becoming a requirement of doing business and, even in tough times, can be utilized to gain competitive advantages.
A panel of CSR executives from Phillips-Van Heusen Corp., Avon Products Inc. and L.L. Bean Inc. acknowledged that investing in programs designed to improve labor and environmental standards presents a challenge in an environment where orders are being slashed and cost cutting is a priority. However, consumers increasingly expect companies to be actively engaged in these issues, while revealing more about the processes involved in bringing their goods to store shelves.
"Corporate responsibility should not be an island off the coast of your business," said Susan Arnot Heaney, director of corporate responsibility, public relations and communications at Avon. "It is how you do your business, and people in the area of …