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Ethical Fashion: The Sweatshop Issue – Why Should We Care?

Sweatshop

Together with the planet’s insatiable desire for low cost, disposable clothes, intended to be put on for a year then lost, the fashion market is always under pressure to generate value for money clothes at any price. It may not even happen to a number people who our well-meaning, thrifty purchases may be costing us, along with others, much more than we believe Fair Trade Clothing UK.

The current economic recession has led many individuals to reduce their fabric in a cheaper way. For many, it has meant downshifting product options when it comes to style, and opting to shop in stores that provide the best deals.

But that does not mean that the customer needs to, and using lots of choice options available, it is up to us to put our money where our mouth is and purchase more sustainably.

As its name implies, a sweatshop isn’t a really wonderful location. It’s common that these employees must work shifts of 12 hours or longer, often with no break for recreation or food, and forced to take overtime in the weekends or from hours to fulfill quotas, on punishment of losing their job if they refuse.

And the pain does not end there.

A number of these employees sleep in local in worker housing that’s owned and handled by their own employer, and the terms are just as bad there. Bare stone floors, no running water and no bathroom facilities are typical, so it’s possible to imagine these employees feel like its only 1 nightmare after another.

A number of those workers might not have even voluntarily started work in the business. Many are fooled into working in a mill, either via individual trafficking or simply by being guaranteed higher wages which never materialise. It’s common that employees are held in debt into the sweatshop company, possibly because they ‘owe’ cash for their lodging
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or have been ‘loaned’ the price of the uniform or training.

Why are you sweatshops on the planet?
Together with the fashion industry trying to increase their gains through lower manufacturing costs, the vast majority of garment manufacture is currently conducted abroad, mostly from the poorest sections of earth. In the last ten years, much was done to advertise the plight of those employees, with brands such as Nike, Gap and Benetton repeatedly urged to tighten their policies and stop sweatshops from working in their distribution chain.

Ever since that time, the vast majority of major brand companies have taken steps to alter policies and have tried to review their distribution chain to eliminate any child labor or sweatshop practices in their supply chain. For Instance, Nike and Gap currently print the following coverages:

All sounds fantastic, and surely progress, right?

Wrong.

At a BBC Panorama investigation aired in 2012, the programme found that despite the well-meaning goals of the firms, the actual situation wasn’t advancing at all, because of problems in simplifying the distribution chain. They emphasized a mill in Cambodia, in which the employees said:
When they denied more than three occasions, they had been fired
Living conditions were little wooden huts with Three or Four people to a room, no running water and routine power outages
Kids as young as 11 or 12 are operating on the manufacturing lines, as their families Can’t afford to live with no salary

 

 

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