Trustees of Boston University

Boston University’s Charles River campus at night

The Sullivan Principles

In 1977, Rev. Leon Sullivan issued a set of six criteria for the treatment of workers by companies operating in South Africa during the apartheid era. An additional criterion was added in 1984. During the period when many Americans called for divestment from companies doing business in South Africa, these principles were used to assess corporate social responsibility. Corporations that did not follow these principles were targeted for divestment.

  1. Non-segregation of the races in all eating, comfort, and work facilities.
  2. Equal and fair employment practices for all employees.
  3. Equal pay for all employees doing equal or comparable work for the same period of time.
  4. Initiation of and development of training programs that will prepare, in substantial numbers, blacks and other nonwhites for supervisory, administrative, clerical, and technical jobs.
  5. Increasing the number of blacks and other nonwhites in management and supervisory positions.
  6. Improving the quality of life for blacks and other nonwhites outside the work environment in such areas as housing, transportation, school, recreation, and health facilities.
  7. Working to eliminate laws and customs that impede social, economic, and political justice. (Added in 1984.)