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The Responsible Jewellery Council Certification System. Contents. About the RJC Structure of the RJC System RJC System Implementation. The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC). The RJC is an international not-for-profit organisation established in 2005.

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  • About the RJC

  • Structure of the RJC System

  • RJC System Implementation

The responsible jewellery council rjc
The Responsible Jewellery Council (RJC)

  • The RJC is an international not-for-profit organisation established in 2005.

  • Our mission is to reinforce consumer confidence by advancing responsible ethical, human rights, social and environmental practices, through the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain.

  • Our focus is on the development and implementation of the RJC System, a certification system using independent third party auditing to verify that Members of the RJC conform to the RJC’s Code of Practices.


  • The RJC currently has 90 Members, large and small, from all parts of the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain, from mine to retail.

  • The RJC seeks to be inclusive, not exclusive. Membership opportunity is open to all businesses and associations participating in the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain and / or engaged in activities that have a potential impact on consumer confidence in diamond or gold jewellery.

Governance of the council
Governance of the Council

Officers of the Council

Chairman:  Matt Runci – Jewelers of America

Vice-Chairman:  John Hall – Rio Tinto Diamonds

Honorary Secretary:  Mark Jenkins – Signet plc

Honorary Treasurer:  James Evans Lombe – De Beers Group

Committee Chairs

Executive Committee:  Matt Runci – Jewelers of America

Standards Committee: Rob Headley – Jewelers of America + Mick Roche – BHP Billiton

Communications Committee:  John Hall – Rio Tinto Diamonds

Membership Committee:  Pamela Caillens – Cartier

Legal Committee:  Mark Jenkins – Signet plc

People Committee:  Geoff Field - British Jewellers Association

Mining Committee: Christine Charles - Newmont

Finance Committee: Ruth Batson – American Gem Society

Accreditation and Training Committee: Gérard Satre – The CHANEL Company Ltd

Management Team

The Executive functions and day-to-day management of the Council are carried out by the RJC Management Team under the direction of Michael Rae, CEO

Rjc system elements
RJC System Elements

  • Certification is third party confirmation that fulfilment of specific requirements has been credibly demonstrated

Scope of application
Scope of Application

  • The RJC System is unique, as it is based on independent auditing and applies to all parts of the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain, from mine to retail.

  • Its scope covers all facilities which are owned or controlled by Members, and actively contribute to the diamond and/or gold jewellery supply chain.

  • The system audits management systems and performance at a company and site level. The RJC System does not seek to certify individual jewellery components.

The rjc system
The RJC System

  • Under the RJC System, all Commercial Members of the Responsible Jewellery Council must be audited by accredited, third party auditors to verify that their performance and management systems conform with the Council’s Code of Practices.

  • Members who have been independently verified as conforming to the Code of Practices will become Certified Members of the Responsible Jewellery Council.

A community of confidence
A Community of Confidence

Now more than ever, the industry must demonstrate responsible practices and protect its reputation.

Certification under the RJC system will help Members to support their reputation and provide confidence to their suppliers and customers.

The RJC System provides a transparent and practical mechanism for helping Members’ local operations and contractors develop the capacity to meet higher standards of ethical, social and environmental performance.

Membership in the RJC also provides an opportunity to be a part of a forum for discussion and interaction with industry peers who share a commitment to advancing responsible business practices, and access to information on emerging business responsibility issues and challenges.

Credibility and efficiency
Credibility and Efficiency

RJC certification will be transparent and highly credible, as it is based on independent auditing.

The standards and auditing requirements will be familiar to a large pool of competitive auditors, which will reduce costs.

Following the RJC System will allow companies now operating their own social responsibility auditing programs to consolidate under one system, avoiding unnecessary duplication and expense, and streamlining work.

The System Tools and Guidance documents and training programs provide additional standardised resources to assist Members and Auditors.

Rjc certification
RJC Certification

  • Standard:

    • The RJC Code of Practices, plus additional components as required eg Mining, and associated guidance;

  • Auditor accreditation:

    • Accreditation of qualified and competent independent auditors who have been trained in the RJC system;

  • Verification:

    • Accredited auditors carry out a verification audit of a Member’s Self Assessment against the Code of Practices;

  • Certification decision:

    • Auditor makes formal recommendation for or against certification based on verification findings;

    • RJC grants certification based on auditor’s recommendation.

Core system documents
Core System Documents

“To advance responsible ethical, social and environmental practices, which respect human rights, throughout the diamond and gold jewellery supply chain, from mine to retail.”

1. The RJC Principles and Code of Practices, under which Members are to be Certified.

2. Certification Handbook: overview of the System

and requirements for achieving certification.

3. RJC Standards Guidance: information and

advice about the Code.

4. RJC Assessment Manual: instructions for members and auditors.

5. RJC Assessment Workbook: forms and

detailed questions for assessments and audits.

The code of practices
The Code of Practices

  • The RJC’s Code of Practices provides the standards on which Members are audited and certified.

  • The RJC Principles and Code of Practices were developed by the Standards Committee with consultation among the RJC’s stakeholders. They were adopted by the RJC in 2006. An update was carried out for the System release in 2008.

  • The Code includes provisions on Business Ethics, Human Rights and Social Performance, Environmental Performance, and Management Systems.

  • The provisions have been established through reference to national and international law, established international and industry standards, and sound business practice.

Implementation timelines
Implementation Timelines

The RJC System will be delivered in three main stages:

1. Release of Core System Documents – November 2008.

2. Completion of the Mining Supplement – Quarter 2 2009.

3. Accreditation of Auditors – Quarter 2 2009.

The RJC System is expected to become fully operational in the

3rd Quarter of 2009, once independent auditors have been trained and

audit firms accredited.

Current RJC Members are required to be certified by December 2010.

Companies that join the RJC after 31st December 2008 will need to

undergo independent verification within two years of becoming Members.

Auditor accreditation
Auditor Accreditation

  • An auditor accreditation system will be developed by the RJC during the first half of 2009.

  • Prospective auditors will need to meet the selection criteria for competence and undertake additional training on the RJC system to become accredited.

  • A list of Accredited Auditors will be publicly available.

  • Auditors accredited under the requirements of ISO/IEC 17021, ISO/IEC Guide 65 (or equivalent) can register their interest in becoming accredited.

  • Auditors will still be required to document their credentials in their Verification Reports and confirm that they have no conflict of interest in carrying out verification for that Member.

Implementing the system what members will need to do
Implementing the System – What Members will need to do

  • Become familiar with the core system documents.

  • Participate in RJC System training programs as they become available.

  • Define their Certification Scope - those parts of their business which actively contribute to the diamond and/or gold jewellery supply chain.

  • Conduct a Self Assessment of their organisation and facilities. This covers the same questions that will be addressed by the auditor.

  • Address any non-conformances.

  • Engage an Accredited Auditor.

  • When ready, submit their Self Assessment to their chosen auditor/s and request a Verification Assessment.

  • Prepare and implement a Corrective Action Plan to address any non-conformances.

What the auditors will do
- What the Auditors will do

  • Conduct a desktop review of the Member’s Self Assessment and related information.

  • Define the Verification Scope:

    • Determine which provisions of the Code of Practices will be verified at which Facilities.

    • Take into account risk and relevance.

  • Conduct on-site review of the selected provisions at selected Facilities, as defined in the Verification Scope.

  • Monitor the Member’s progress on implementing any Corrective Action Plans.

  • Submit verification reports:

    • Detailed report to Member.

    • Summary and recommendation to the RJC Management Team.

What the rjc will do
- What the RJC will do

  • The RJC Management Team grants certification to a Member based on the auditor’s recommendation.

  • The Management Team will confirm the Member is in good standing and will review the auditor’s report to check:

    • Auditors are accredited and competent.

    • All major non-conformances have been corrected, or are subject to a one year corrective plan verified by the auditor.

  • Document the terms of the Certification (names, locations, dates etc.)

  • Issue formal documentation, including a unique Certification identification, conditions for use of the RJC logo and related intellectual property;

  • Record the Member’s certification status on the RJC website.

Non conformances and corrective action
Non-conformances and corrective action

  • Summary of obligations based on the outcomes of the Auditor’s Verification Assessment

Check and balances
Check and balances

  • Quality control

    • Standardised forms for assessing and verifying conformance;

    • Guidance on standards and certification;

    • Formal training and accreditation of auditors;

    • Peer reviews of auditing quality;

    • Member training and support.

  • Complaints mechanism

    • RJC will investigate and resolve complaints relating to certification assessments and outcomes.

  • Sanctions

    • Disciplinary proceedings against Members or auditors will be triggered by actions or omissions that affect the integrity of the RJC system.

The responsible jewellery council
The Responsible Jewellery Council

The Responsible Jewellery Council is the trading name of the Council for Responsible Jewellery Practices Ltd.

Council for Responsible Jewellery Practices Ltd, 20-22 Bedford Row, London, WC1R 4JS, United Kingdom. The Council for Responsible Jewellery Practices Ltd is registered in England and Wales with company number 05449042.


Email: [email protected]

Founding members of the rjc
Founding Members of the RJC


  • BHP Billiton Diamonds

  • Cartier (part of Richemont)

  • World Jewellery Confederation

  • Diamond Trading Company (part of De Beers Group)

  • Diarough

  • Jewelers of America

  • National Association of Goldsmiths (UK)

  • Newmont Mining

  • Rio Tinto

  • Rosy Blue

  • Signet Group

  • Tiffany & Co.

  • Zale Corporation.