LaLonde Jewelers & Gemologists is committed to abide by all governing laws and regulations prohibiting the sale of diamonds known to have been illegally traded to fund violence and conflict.
- LaLonde Jewelers & Gemologists fully supports efforts to prevent conflict diamonds from entering the legitimate diamond supply chain.
- LaLonde Jewelers & Gemologists fully complies with the System of Warranties and requires all suppliers and vendors to support the Kimberley Process.
- LaLonde Jewelers & Gemologists is committed to reviewing new information regarding the Kimberley Process as it is released, imparting this knowledge to staff members and updating our policies as appropriate.
- Finally, LaLonde Jewelers & Gemologists guarantees that any and all diamonds purchased and subsequently sold or traded through our retail store are free from conflict
What are conflict diamonds?
Conflict diamonds, also known as “blood' diamonds, are rough diamonds used by rebel movements or their allies to finance armed conflicts aimed at undermining legitimate governments.
What is the Kimberley Process?
The Kimberley Process is an international certification scheme that regulates trade in rough diamonds. It aims to prevent the flow of conflict diamonds, while helping to protect legitimate trade in rough diamonds.
The Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) outlines the rules that govern the trade in rough diamonds. The KPCS has developed a set of minimum requirements that each participant must meet.
The KP is not, strictly speaking, an international organization: it has no permanent offices or permanent staff. It relies on the contributions of participants, supported by industry and civil society observers.
Neither can the KP be considered as an international agreement from a legal perspective, as it is implemented through the national legislations of its participants.
Who is involved?
The Kimberley Process (KP) participants are states and regional economic integration organizations that are eligible to trade in rough diamonds. As of 21 September 2007, there are 48 participants representing 74 countries, with the European Community counting as a single participant. The participants include all major rough diamond producing, exporting and importing countries.
The diamond industry, through the World Diamond Council, and civil society groups (currently Global Witness and Partnership Africa Canada) are also integral parts of the KP. These organizations have been involved since the start and continue to contribute to its effective implementation and monitoring.
What areas of the world are affected by conflict diamonds?
The only current case of rebel forces controlling diamond-producing areas is in CoÂ´te d'Ivoire. These conflict diamonds constitute less than 0.1% of the world's production, according to estimates from the Kimberley Process (KP) and the United Nations. The KP is working with the United Nations and neighboring countries to stop these diamonds entering the legal market.
There is now much greater stability in the other countries that have previously suffered from conflicts funded in part by diamonds: Sierra Leone, Angola, Liberia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Of course, fragile situations still prevail, and no one should make the mistake of losing interest just because the guns are silent.
The KP means that there is now the potential for the wealth created by diamonds to contribute to peace and prosperity in these countries, rather than conflict. There have been some promising results; 2006 was the DRC's best year for diamond exports since the stones were discovered 100 years ago. In Sierra Leone, legal exports have increased 100-fold since the end of the war in 2002, bringing benefits for the estimated 10% of the population who depend on the diamond industry.
How do I know I am not buying a conflict diamond?
Although the Kimberley Process does not certify individual jewelers, reputable businesses, like LaLonde Jewelers, only buy from suppliers that can guarantee that their diamonds are conflict-free.
What can I, as a consumer, do?
Ultimately, the success of the Kimberley Process is in the hands of consumers. We appreciate your effort to make sure that you are buying certified diamonds.
The KP does not certify individual jewelers. However, a reputable business should be able to answer the following questions:
- How can I be sure your jewelery does not contain conflict diamonds?
- Do your diamond suppliers participate in the industry's "System of Warranties" *?
- Can I see a copy of your company's policy on conflict diamonds?
*The diamond industry has set up a 'System of Warranties' that complements, but is distinct from, the Kimberley Process.
How does a country join the Kimberley Process?
A country must meet the minimum requirements of the Kimberley Process (KP) as set out in the relevant sections of the Kimberley Process Certification Scheme (KPCS) document, and submit its application to the Chair, who then requests the participation committee to consider it.
The KP has a mandate from the United Nations to be inclusive and, in principle, all countries with a stake in the diamond business are encouraged to join. Under the scheme's requirements, KP participants may only import or export rough diamonds to or from other participants.
Where can I find more information on the KP?
Is it possible to say where a rough diamond is from?
A number of researchers are working on different analytical techniques that could enable them to determine where an individual stone comes from. However, to date, there is no scientific consensus on the best methods. The Kimberley Process relies on administrative controls to track stones from mine to export, and subsequent trading.
The Kimberley Process (KP) is investigating the possibility of detecting anomalies both from 'footprinting' (study of the overall characteristics of production/exports) and 'fingerprinting' (identification of individual stones) and how these methods might strengthen KP implementation.