Our commitment to social responsibility at Fort Wayne Metals is deeply rooted in the vision of our founder, Mr. Ardelle Glaze. In a letter written to the company in September 1960, Mr. Glaze illustrates, “I have always felt that people are more important than materials or facilities. Their happiness, good working conditions, good income, all contribute to the welfare of the company.”
Fort Wayne Metals grew, and we became involved with programs like Red Cross blood drives, aluminum can collection for Habitat for Humanity, and holiday mitten and scarf trees. As the number of people joining our team greatly expanded, the demand to hew to Mr. Glaze’s original vision for his employees began to extend to our community to an even greater capacity. Small projects became major event coordinating, involving cross-sector groups throughout our community to do large-scale good work, like our donation and distribution of 5,000 gallons of water to Flint, Michigan during their time of ongoing crisis. It soon became clear that our social responsibility initiative was already underway, and as such we have developed the following policy:
Fort Wayne Metals is committed to conducting business in a manner that is socially responsible and commands respect for its integrity. Our decision making honors our mission, values, and operating principles, and is consistent with the concepts defined in ISO 26000, which states:
Social responsibility is the responsibility of an organization for the impacts of its decisions and activities on society and the environment, through transparent and ethical behavior that
- Contributes to sustainable development, including health and the welfare of society;
- Takes into account the expectations of stakeholder;
- Is in compliance with applicable law and consistant with international norms of behavior; and
- Is integrated throughout the organization and practiced in its relationships.
Our Values and Operating Principles are at the root of what drives our approach to community projects and employee outreach within the social responsibility initiative. When we consider our social responsibility philosophy, we take specifically to heart our Values and Operating Principles.
The quality of our products and services, the culture within our organization, and our support of the community are the basis by which we are judged.
Integrity cannot be compromised.
It is easy to overlook the important role businesses play in shaping our communities, because stepping up as a social and environmental leader can require extra time and effort. Fort Wayne Metals is and continues to be the kind of corporation that seeks to aid in the success of both the people in our buildings and the communities of which we are an active member.
Our people are the source of our strength.
As stated before, we know our ability to support our community is directly related to the hardworking, dedicated employees who volunteer time and again to donate their time, talent, or treasure on behalf of Fort Wayne Metals.
Fort Wayne Metals has ongoing initiatives which involve a marrying of social and environmental outreach and education. Each program identified below also includes a brief description of our strategic objective and indicates our current progress.
|Initiative||Opportunities and Progress|
|Annual "Big Impact" Community Outreach Project||2015 – 5,000 gallons of water plus other supplies were donated, transported, and directly distributed to individuals facing the ongoing water crisis of lead poisoning in Flint, Michigan.
2016 – 13 laptops refurbished and donated to graduates of a Blue Jacket Career Academy. This project involved a partnership between Fort Wayne Metals, Indiana Tech, and the Indiana Eta Chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity.
|Employee Ambassador Initiatives||2017 – rollout of initiative. Employees will lead the way as ambassadors for employee-targeted CSR opportunities. Spring initiative will involve adopting active duty service members from the Fort Wayne Metals extended family. Fall initiative will engage employee participation with Fort Wayne Parks Great Tree Canopy Comeback.|
|Ongoing Employee Participation Opportunities||Red Cross Blood Drives, Francine’s Friends Mobile Mammography, United Way Day of Caring, Spring & Fall Bike to Work Days, Holiday family adoption|
|Educational Outreach||K-12, higher education, and community education opportunities are made available both on and off-site. Activities range from tours and presentations to children’s activities like the perennial favorite “Edible Aquifer” activity.|
|Mentoring Relationships||Mentoring is offered to other local businesses to assist in getting their sustainability programs running.|
In late 2015 it came to our attention that a neighboring community to the north, Flint, Michigan, was experiencing significant and severe lead contamination of their drinking water supply. Our EHS&S team immediately saw an opening for Fort Wayne Metals to both help serve a community in crisis and engage its employees in meaningful volunteerism, and we partnered with Indiana Tech alumni to work broadly across our community. Throughout December 2015 and January 2016, Fort Wayne Metals employees brought cases of water to work with them. Employees in contact with our supply chain engaged those businesses to become involved in our donation, and a press release brought even more water and supply donations to our door. All-in-all, we collected over 5,000 gallons of water.
Brothers Express, a local less-than-a-load hauler, volunteered one of their semis, a driver, and the fuel in order to transport the water from Fort Wayne to Flint. Our donation was so heavy that we met the weight limit of the semi. A Fort Wayne Metals representative traveled with representatives from Indiana Tech and the local faith community to meet the semi in Flint, where they volunteered a weekend of their time to distribute water at Metropolitan Baptist Tabernacle. Each car that stopped at the church was loaded with as much water as could be packed into the car. This crisis continues to be ongoing in Flint, Michigan, and more communities even closer to Fort Wayne have experienced similar water contamination. We continue to be vigilant and informed by the success of this project as we look for similar collection opportunities in our future.
A standard practice at many companies working toward good records of social and environmental responsibility is to ensure electronics are recycled properly according to all laws and regulations. At Fort Wayne Metals, we spent several years holding electronics back from being recycled, knowing that it could be possible to find better homes for much of the equipment. While Fort Wayne Metals might have upgraded to newer models better suited to our needs, much the equipment was not yet entirely obsolete.
During the summer of 2016, we began to catalog our older electronic equipment and seek out new homes for it. Printers, copiers, desktop computers, and all manner of electronics were donated to nonprofit and educational organizations throughout the region. The bulk of all the equipment was rehomed, and processes for maintaining the project were established. In early winter 2016, we partnered with Blue Jacket Career Academy to offer 13 laptops to the organization’s graduates who have successfully held employment for over one year. The Indiana Eta chapter of Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity volunteered to refurbish and repair the computers to like-new condition. These laptops were presented at a November 2016 celebration ceremony at Blue Jacket, with over 200 members of the public and press invited.