A row of white shirts on hangers.

Approved EO 4 Specification: Apparel and Textile Materials

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Covered Products 

Any apparel or raw textile materials. 

 

Definitions 

Formal Law Enforcement Uniform – Uniforms issued to law enforcement agents for formal occasions that are not for everyday use. 

Law Enforcement Apparel – Apparel issued by an affected entity to law enforcement staff for use while carrying out the entity’s mission and that could pose a security risk if not properly disposed of at end of life. This includes, but is not limited to, non-formal law enforcement uniforms, hats, jackets, and shirts. Law enforcement staff include, but are not limited to, State Police, University Police, Parks Police, Environmental Conservation Officers, Forest Rangers, Corrections Officers, and any other staff designated by their agency as law enforcement. 

Non-Law Enforcement Apparel – Apparel issued by an affected entity to staff to wear for non-law enforcement purposes while carrying out the entity’s mission. This includes, but is not limited to, shirts, hats, pants, and jackets. 

Perfluorinated chemical (PFC) – Any perfluorinated or polyfluorinated chemical, including but not limited to long- and short-chain fluorinated alkyl compounds (PFAs), fluorinated sulfonate compounds, fluorinated polyethers, and fluorinated polymers. 

Textile Materials – Any material that an affected entity purchases to use in the process of manufacturing apparel. This includes both natural and manmade fiber, including, but not limited to, cotton, polyester, and wool. 

Textile Recycle Program – A program designed to take used fiber products to recover the usable materials from them and turn them into new products. 

Useful Condition – The state a piece of apparel is in when it is not significantly damaged, stained, or altered and can still be used for its intended purpose. 

 

Standards and Certifications 

bluesign®  bluesign is a third-party certification program that traces each textile’s path along the manufacturing process to ensure that they are produced in a way that minimizes chemicals and the use of natural resources. This certification covers products, brands, and chemicals. 

Cradle to Cradle™ Cradle to Cradle is a third-party certification program that assesses products for environmental and social performance across five critical sustainability categories: material health, material reuse, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness. It certifies yarns, fabrics, dyes and finishes, thread, trims, and notions, apparel, and raw materials. 

Fair Trade™ USA Factory Standard for Apparel and Home Goods Fair Trade is a third-party certification program that aims to increase empowerment, leadership, economic development, and organization of workers employed in apparel manufacturing facilities, and to ensure fair working conditions and environmentally responsible production methods. 

Global Organic Textile Standard – The Global Organize Textile Standard aims to define world-wide recognized requirements to ensure organic status of textiles, from harvesting of the raw materials, through environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing up to labelling in order to provide a credible assurance to the end consumer. The standard covers the processing, manufacturing, packaging, labelling, trading and distribution of all textiles made from at least 70% certified organic natural fibers. The final products may include, but are not limited to fiber products, yarns, fabrics, clothes and home textiles. 

Global Recycled Standard – The Global Recycled Standard Is a holistic third-party certification for products with recycled content. It provides brands with a tool for more accurate labeling, encourages innovation in the use of reclaimed materials, and establishes more transparency in the supply chain to provide better information to consumers. 

OEKOTEX® Standard 100 OEKO‑TEX® Standard 100 is a globally standardized, independent testing and certification system for textile raw materials, intermediate & end products of all processing stages and accessory materials used. It covers raw materials/semi-finished items; fabrics; accessories (buttons, lace, zippers, etc.); commission business (pre-treatment, printing, dyeing, coating, etc.); end-user, ready-made (clothing, accessories, other textile products like tablecloths and bedding). Products must meet chemical criteria and pass tests for harmful substances. 

Responsible Down Standard – The Responsible Down Standard is a third-party certification program that ensures that down and feathers come from ducks and geese that have been treated well. This means enabling them to live healthy lives, express innate behaviors, and not suffer from pain, fear or distress. 

Responsible Wool Standard – The Responsible Wool Standard is a third-party certification program that ensures that wool is produced from farms that sustainably manage their land and treat their sheep humanely. 

 

Specifications 

Limiting the Purchasing of Apparel and Textiles 

To the maximum extent practicable, all affected entities shall limit the amount of apparel and raw textile materials they purchase to the least amount they need to carry out their missions. This includes avoiding the use of apparel as giveaways or promotional items. 

When Purchasing Apparel or Raw Textile Materials 

All affected entities shall purchase apparel and raw textile materials that: 

  • Do not contain cotton sourced from Uzbekistan or Turkmenistan. 
  • Does not contain added anti-microbial or anti-odor agents. 
  • Are not labeled as “dry clean only”, except for formal law enforcement uniforms if no alternatives are available. 

In addition, all affected entities are encouraged, to purchase apparel and raw textile material that has one, or preferably more, of the following attributes: 

  • Do not contain intentionally added per- and polyfluorinated substances (PFCs) 
  • Are produced with recycled content 
  • Are produced with organic cotton 
  • Carry one or more of the following third-party certifications:
    • bluesign® 
    • Cradle to Cradle™ 
    • Fair Trade™ 
    • Global Organic Textile Standard 
    • Global Recycled Standard 
    • OEKO‑TEX® Standard 100 
    • Responsible Down Standard 
    • Responsible Wool Standard 
  • Limits the amount of packaging that the item comes in and it must meet the packaging language at the end of this specification 

In addition, all affected entities are encouraged, to the maximum extent practicable, to avoid the purchase of apparel embroidered or decorated with special or date-specific logos or clothing that can only be worn within a specific time period or for one occasion. 

Caring for Apparel During Use 

All affected entities are encouraged, to the maximum extent practicable, to care for their apparel items in the following way: 

  • Launder using detergents that meet the laundry detergent specification. 
  • Only dry cleaned if absolutely necessary and ensure cleaning is done in compliance with the garment cleaning specification. 

Managing Apparel at End of Life 

All affected entities shall, to the maximum extent practicable, follow the hierarchy of best practices for the management of non-law enforcement apparel at end of life: 

  • If the item is still in useful condition:
    • Put it back into circulation to facilitate reuse by other agency employees until it is no longer in a useful condition. 
  • When the item is no longer in useful condition: 
    • Recycle it in a textile recycling program. 

All affected entities are encouraged, to the maximum extent practicable, to dispose of their law enforcement apparel in the following manner: 

  • Follow agency procedures for end-of-life care of law enforcement apparel. 
  • Reuse the fabric from law enforcement apparel for other applications, such as maintenance rags. 
  • Recycle the remaining fabric from law enforcement apparel in a textile recycling program. 

Managing Raw Textile Materials at End of Life 

All affected entities are encouraged, to the maximum extent practicable, to follow the hierarchy below of best practices for end of life for extra and unusable pieces of raw textile materials to the maximum extent practical: 

  • Remake them into other usable apparel or items. 
  • Recycle them. 

Packaging 

Packaging shall comply with Environmental Conservation Law section 37-0205. Packaging shall not contain inks, dyes, pigments, adhesives, stabilizers, or any other additives to which any lead, cadmium, mercury, or hexavalent chromium is intentionally added or contain incidental concentrations of lead, cadmium, mercury or hexavalent chromium which together are greater than 100 parts per million by weight (0.01%). 

New York State encourages affected entities to adopt the following in order of preference when purchasing items that come in packaging: 

  • Items that do not need packaging, or the packaging is part of the product. 
  • Items that come in reusable packaging. 
  • Items that come in bulk packaging. 
  • Items that come in innovative packaging that reduces the amount of packaging. 
  • Items that come in packaging that remains the property of the supplier and does not become the property of the end user under any circumstance or condition. The vendor shall certify that the packaging material will be reused, recycled, or composted, and managed in compliance with applicable local, state, and federal laws. 
  • Items that come in packaging that maximizes recycled or biodegradable (compostable) content and/or meets or exceeds the minimum post-consumer content level for packaging in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Comprehensive Procurement Guidelines. Biodegradable products should only be used in areas where a composting facility exists that accept the material. 
  • Items that come in Packaging that is recyclable or biodegradable (compostable). Biodegradable products should only be used in areas where a composting facility exists and will accept the material. 

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