Dell supports the inclusion of Conflict Minerals in the new Financial Reform Bill

Dell commends Representative Jim McDermott, Senator Sam Brownback, Representative Barney Frank and Senator Christopher J. Dodd for passing conflict minerals language as a part of the financial reform bill recently signed by President Obama. We support the goals of the conflict minerals language, as we have supported Rep. McDermott and Sen. Brownback’s efforts to address conflict minerals in recent years.

We have long embraced the role of transparency in a socially and environmentally responsible supply chain, and the standards set by this bill will help achieve that for minerals sourcing. As we’ve said before, it will take more than one company, and more than one industry, to have an impact in the Democratic Republic of Congo. A collective multi-industry push is the catalyst that will make the change possible. Dell is committed to working with other industries, the government and nongovernmental organizations to translate this bill into a means of purchasing conflict-free minerals that we all can have confidence in. 

We’re part of a number of cross-industry groups working to address this challenge.

As part of our membership in the Electronic Industry Citizenship Coalition, Dell is helping to advance a responsible sourcing program. The EICC/GeSI working group has created a smelter validation process that it will soon pilot with a voluntary audit of smelters for tantalum.  In addition, we have been engaged with the tin industry on its new pilot program, which attempts to “bag-and-tag” tin from mine to smelter.

As part of an NGO working group lead by As You Sow, we aim to address international diplomacy, implement site visits, advance community development in the Congo and help industries comply with the new legislation around conflict minerals. Within that work group, Dell participates on a Policy and Diplomacy committee convening NGOs, investors and industry to identify areas where we can make a common recommendation on the details of the new Frank-Dodd bill during the SEC’s period of rulemaking. 

Additionally, Dell will bring together leaders across multiple industries this fall in Paris to discuss progress on extractives, with a goal of raising awareness to this topic with an international audience.

This is a complex situation but we want you to know that Dell is engaging at all levels, with many groups, and we are driving to a common vision of responsibly sourcing material from the DRC.

Dell will continue to lead the conversation, proactively seeking solutions and encouraging everyone who has a product that contains these minerals to join us in this important endeavor.

You can learn more about our perspective at www.dell.com/extractives.

About the Author: Cris Turner

Christopher “Cris” Turner leads Dell’s Americas American Government Affairs office. With 20 years of experience, Mr. Turner manages Dell’s U.S., Canadian and Latin America government affairs efforts and advocates for Dell’s public policy positions before federal, state and local policymakers. Prior to his current role, Mr. Turner led global cybersecurity and cloud computing policy efforts, designed advocacy campaigns in the U.S. and Mexico, and coordinated corporate social responsibility activities in Washington, D.C., for Dell. He is one of the creators of the Dell PolicyHack™, a policy development format that brings together entrepreneurs, government officials, students and policy wonks to create solutions to the toughest issues facing governments. Mr. Turner has extensive experience managing high level government affairs strategies for corporations and trade associations. Prior to joining Dell in 2008, Mr. Turner served as the federal and state public policy manager for the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), where he advocated on cybersecurity, telecommunications, trade and Internet issues before federal and state elected and appointed officials. From 1999-2007, Mr. Turner managed security, infrastructure, transportation and telecommunications issues for various clients at leading government affairs firms in Washington, D.C. Mr. Turner began his career at Steptoe & Johnson, a Washington, D.C.-based law firm, where he managed policy issues related to international air transportation. Mr. Turner is a graduate of Georgetown University, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Government. He also attended the University of Colorado School of Law. Mr. Turner serves on the Boards of Directors for the Global Entrepreneurship Network, MathCounts, and the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute. He, his wife and daughter reside in Washington, D.C.