BRANDS AND RETAILERS

Brands signing up to the 2018 Bangladesh Accord 07 Mar – 14 Mar: Brands signing up this week to the 2018 Accord include: Forever New, Orsay, The Sting House of Brands, and Y’Organic (14 Mar). [Ed’s note: list gleaned from IndustriALL’s updates list of signatories here.]

Furla to go fur-free: “The Italian accessories company has vowed to go fur-free starting with the cruise 2019 collection, which will be in stores in November” (14 Mar – free subscription required).

Spanish trade union CCOO releases report on its work in the Mango supply chain in India: CCOO (Worker’s Commissions), the largest trade union in Spain, has released a report called, India 2017: A union approach to the textile, clothing, footwear and leather industry in the Mango supply chain. The report is based on visit conducted by the union with the head of Mango’s CSR and the company conducting social audits in India. It assesses ongoing work by the union in shoe, ferment and leather factories around Delhi. You can download the report here (PDF). (13 Mar – in Spanish).

The latest trend at fashion houses? Going green: “One of the buzziest jobs in the fashion industry is also one of the least glamorous. The title is sustainability director or chief sustainability officer – a relatively new role more likely to be held by a policy wonk than a follower of runway trends” (13 Mar) [Ed’s note: quotes CSOs from Kering, Eileen Fisher, PVH, Gap and Hugo Boss. Also mentioned are H&M, Inditex and Prabal Gurung.]

How might we create a waste-free, circular future by designing everyday products using Nike Grind materials? OpenIDEO and Nike have just kicked off a design challenge around creating a waste-free, circular future using Nike Grind (13 Mar). See more below. Entries close 01 May.

Nike circular innovation challenge: Nike is calling on designers to help create solutions that will take the industry one big step closer to a sustainable future, split into two distinct areas – design and materials, with $2 million up for grabs. Entries close 01 May (13 Mar).

Jack Wolfskin CEO on outdoor trends and sustainability: “For Summer 2018, we will launch our Texapore Ecosphere jackets, which feature a 100% recycled membrane, 100% recycled outer layer, and 100% recycled inner lining. And for Winter 2018/19, 100% recycled materials will be used in shell, fleece and hybrid styles” (13 Mar).

H&M on why collective industry ambition is crucial for a sustainable fashion future: “Harsha Vardhan, global environment manager for H&M, says the two biggest challenges to face on this journey are around recycling technology and the materials used themselves” (12 Mar).

Anna Gedda, head of sustainability at H&M: “The woman in charge of the strategy behind the Swedish fashion giant's commitment to long-term sustainability” (12 Mar).

Clothing company removes 1,000,000 pounds of trash from global waters: “ United By Blue, a sustainable fashion line that not only uses eco-friendly materials in the manufacturing of its products but has made a commitment to removing one pound of trash from global oceans and waterways for every product sold” (12 Mar).

H&M Foundation invites public to split 1 million euro between five innovations reinventing the fashion industry: The public can vote on any of the five winning innovations: Crop-A-Porter (sustainable bio-textiles), Algae Apparel (algae into bio-fibre), Smart Stitch (dissolvable thread), The Regenerator (recirculating fashion), and Fungi Fashion (clothes from mushrooms). You can vote here until 16 March (12 Mar). [Ed’s note: see more here.]

Fair denim guide: “[A list of] exceptional, sustainable-thinking denim producers [listed in alphabetical order:]: Blaumann, Bleed , Blue Jeans Go Green, Dawn Denim, DL 1961, Feuervogl, Good Society, Kings of Indigo, Kuyichi, Maas Nature, Mud Jeans, Nudie Jeans, Outland Denim, Selfnation, Sey Organic Jeans, Wunderwek” (10 Mar – in German). [Ed’s note: includes short commentary on each company.]

Water-friendly shoe brand: “Sea Star Beachwear and textile artisan John Robshaw have collaborated on limited-edition espadrilles ... Featuring a water-friendly neoprene upper and rubber deck shoe sole” (09 Mar).

Cradle to Cradle certifies first wool brand: “US wool apparel brand, Ramblers Way has announced that is set to launch the world’s first Cradle to Cradle (C2C) certified organic wool clothing line. The certification applies to all the Ramblers Way apparel which is also certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS)” (09 Mar – subscription required to read full article).

Target targets clothing waste with denim recycling test program: “Target is teaming up with I:Collect (I:CO) — which specializes in collecting, recycling and reusing clothing, shoes and textiles — on a two-week denim-exchange program” (09 Mar).

Timberland Is Helping Rebuild Haiti’s Cotton Industry: “[T]hanks to a project involving thousands of smallholder farmers, apparel brands like Timberland, and a blockchain network, [Haiti cotton] could be set for a comeback” (09 Mar).

Union slams Francis Fashions after 25 workers allegedly sacked: “The National Workers Union (NWU) said it wants answers after 25 workers were allegedly barred from entering the compound where they worked at Cadel Trading, which owns and operates Francis Fashions Shoe Locker” (09 Mar).

MPs question retailers during inquiry following fur mislabelling scandal: “MPs have begun an inquiry into the mislabelling of real animal fur as fake fur, questioning leading UK retailers Missguided, Boohoo and House of Fraser” (08 Mar).

How Christian Dior’s collections embodies 5 elements of fashion sustainability: “Designers of the past seemed to incorporate facets of sustainability into their model, not purposefully, but because those elements are what represented a well-made product. This stood out to me last weekend at the Christian Dior Exhibition in Toronto” (07 Mar).

Adidas targets tier two suppliers for anti-slavery focus: “In an update of the firm’s efforts to eradicate slavery in its supply chain, Adidas said it had targeted all tier two suppliers in high risk countries, including Taiwan, China, Vietnam and Indonesia, for participation in modern slavery capacity building workshops” (07 Mar).

How Stanley/Stella tackled gender-based violence in Bangladesh factories: “FWF brand Stanley/Stella is fighting back against gender-based violence in garment factories. Take a look at how workers and factory management deal with sexual harassment at one of Stanley/Stella’s suppliers in Bangladesh” (07 Mar – video, 2:21).

John Lewis tops the list of employee ratings: “John Lewis is rated by employees as the best retailer to work for in the UK [according to reviews on a jobs website, with Marks & Spencer (#4), Clarks (#5), TK Maxx (#11), and Gap (#12)]” (07 Mar).

The brand merging ethical fashion and refugee artisans: “Blue Meets Blue is … a community of artisans who support, employ, and encourage Syrian refugee women to create gorgeous clothes, made in the U.S.” (06 Mar).

Veja wants to make the most sustainable sneaker in the world: “The French duo behind socially conscious sneaker brand Veja reveals just what goes into making their ecologically friendly ethical kicks” (06 Mar).

Lindex contributes to increased health among female textile workers: “10 per cent of Lindex sales during International Women’s Day, March 8, will be donated to HERhealth which aims to improve health and lives of female textile workers” (05 Mar).

Guess joins retailers committing to fabrics that protect forests, locals: “Guess Inc. is adopting a policy to trace the sources of its wood-based fabrics, joining an array of fashion companies aiming to rid their supply chains of products from endangered forests [n collaboration with Rainforest Action Network (RAN)]” (27 Feb).

The need for a sustainable global supply chain: “High street giant Marks & Spencer is leading the charge against abuses in the global supply chain with a long-term commitment to sustainability” (23 Feb).

REPORTS AND COMMENTARY

“There’s a fly in my water!” Building quality management into workforce practices in China: “Steve Wickham, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Matrix APA (UK) Ltd., blogs for us on how a partner factory in China, the Xiangshan Dasheng Knitting Co Ltd. is putting ETI/ILO Score training on improving management and workforce relations into practice” (13 Mar).

Global chorus of support grows for persecuted Cambodian human rights defender Tola Moeun: ““Brands that are silent should be clear about how costly that can be – every initiative they plan in Cambodia risks failure or ridicule if civil society is confined in jails or harassed out of the country by Cambodian authorities [says  Aruna Kashyap, senior counsel in the women’s rights division of Human Rights Watch]” (13 Mar). 

Higg Index verification you can trust: “Verification helps strengthen the autonomy of facilities around the world, so they can operate more confidently and transparently with their supply chain partners” (13 Mar). [Ed’s note: blog by SAC VP Betsy Blaisdell.]

Fashion’s crippling impact on the environment is only getting worse: [Ed’s note: from Vice News, a short article accompanying a 3:35 minute video. Focuses on rising consumption and production, and resultant pollution.] (12 Mar).

App aims to improve working conditions in Bangladesh, but who reports? “[W]e cannot rely on Bangladesh's government to drive those initiatives. That pressure must come from the buyers — and from the consumers — unwilling to support dangerous working conditions and poor wages” (12 Mar). [Ed’s note: about a new application launched by the Bangladeshi labor inspectorate, called the Labour Inspection Management Application (LIMA).]

Oritain eyes cotton supply chain traceability in Egypt: “Supply chain traceability company, Oritain has announced it has partnered with Egyptian cotton supply chain trader Modern Nile Cotton Co., in order to verify the origin of Egyptian cotton and identify environmental and social risks across its supply chain” (12 Mar – subscription required to read full article).

Microplastic pollution in oceans is far worse than feared, say scientists: “The number of tiny plastic pieces polluting the world’s oceans is vastly greater than thought, new research indicates. The work reveals the highest microplastic pollution yet discovered anywhere in the world in a river near Manchester in the UK” (12 Mar).

Marie-Claire Daveu, chief sustainability officer and head of international institutional affairs at Kering: “Charged with embedding sustainability throughout Kering’s stable of brands, at Kering Marie-Claire Daveu is changing the future of fashion” (12 Mar).

Six influential women in ethical fashion: Zoe Partridge (Wear the Walk), Carry Somers and Orsola de Castro (Fashion Revolution), Stacy Flynn (Evrnu), Alexis McGivern (International Union for Conservation of Nature), and Carmen Hijosa (Piñatex) (11 Mar).

30 celebrities call on Government to use Brexit to ban fur imports: “Dame Judi Dench, Sir Andy Murray, Joanna Lumley and 27 other celebrities today call on the Government to use trade freedoms after Brexit to ban all fur imports” (10 Mar). [Ed’s note: see full list here.]

ZDHC approves SciveraLENS for MRSL conformance: “The ZDHC Roadmap to Zero Programme [has] announce[d] SciveraLENS as the newest ZDHC Accepted Certification Standard to indicate conformance to the ZDHC Manufacturing Restricted Substances List (ZDHC MRSL)” (09 Mar).

5,000 facilities now GOT certified: “The number of certified sites has grown from 4,642 facilities in 2016 to 5,024 facilities in 2017. GOTS certified facilities are located in 62 countries around the world” (09 Mar).

Fake news: “The proliferation of fake fur represented a cultural tipping point at the European shows as many designers eschewed the real stuff for its facsimile on the runways.” (09 Mar – free subscription required to read).

Bangladesh to produce viscose from jute: “Speakers at a discussion [last week] said Bangladesh has potential to produce viscose from jute where government has spent $700-800 million in every year to import viscose which made from wood” (08 Mar).

Vegan knitwear by Kate Morris: “Few young designers are as proficient in ethical design as Kate Morris, winner of last year’s prestigious Redress design award” (08 Mar).

Sustainability is not about designing less, but designing better: Designers Beatrix Ong (formerly at Jimmy Choo) and Jane Withers (who has worked with Selfridges and Danish textile company Kvadrat) talked at a Brainstorm Design conference Singapore on sustainability (08 Mar).

The Australian Circular Fashion Conference to become the next sustainable “peak body”: “Half of the Australian female population is consciously aware of the eco-friendly and ethical brands, paving the way for positive change” (08 Mar).

Indian crime thriller used by garment workers’ rights campaigners: “[Thomson Reuters Foundation reports] a crime thriller about the death of an activist rescuing women from exploitative work conditions in garment and textile factories in southern India has become an unlikely bestseller among those campaigning for workers’ rights” (08 Mar). [Ed’s note: the book is Desert Land by Ira Murugavel, in Tamil only (here).]

Three video stories on women from the garment industry from C&A Foundation:” On International Women’s Day, [C&A Foundation] bring three stories of real women from the garment industry, who share [the Foundation’s] mission to fight gender inequality and improve the lives of millions of workers in the fashion industry” (08 Mar – video, 3:11 minutes).

Copenhagen Fashion Summit launches solutions platform to accelerate sustainability: “Due to the urgent need to accelerate sustainability in the fashion industry, Copenhagen Fashion Summit 2018 sees the launch of Innovation Forum, a new, sustainable solutions platform” (08 Mar).

Study sheds new light on textile microfibre pollution: “A brand new study on textile microfibre pollution, which has not yet been published, has found that cotton and rayon (viscose) fabrics release more of these minute, problematic fibres during laundering than polyester textiles; but it was also found that in a wastewater treatment situation, the biodegradation of natural textile fibres is markedly more rapid than that of synthetics” (08 Mar – subscription required to read full article).

Brands celebrate international women's day, but they're still oppressing women workers: “As fashion brands cash in on the women’s day hype with feminist slogan T-shirts, ethical label founder Sophie Slater of Birdsong asks who made those clothes, and who is making the money?” (08 Mar).

Your feminist shirt means nothing if it was made in a sweatshop: “I want to know who made the clothes these companies are advertising with such pro-feminist gusto” (08 Mar).

Ending exploitation of women in international supply chains: “[ETI] brought together 10 brands and the University of Manchester to analyse progress being made in ensuring greater gender equality in international supply chains” (08 Mar). [Ed’s note: article by ETI’s Annie Barber.]

Better Cotton standard given overhaul: “The Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) is to launch its revised Better Cotton Principles and Criteria (P&Cs) this month, in a move that will incorporate several substantial changes” (08 Mar).

Interview with Carry Somers, co-founder of Fashion Revolution: “The greatest challenge continues to be transparency. No brand scored over 50% in our Fashion Transparency Index and the average score was 49 out of 250, roughly 20% of all possible points” (08 Mar).

Meet Joëlle van de Pavert: Finalist Redress Design Award 2017: “I think it is important for the new generation of fashion designers to communicate a message about being aware of what happens in fashion nowadays, and to confront “over-consumers” about their behaviour” (08 Mar).

6 ways Xi Jinping’s power grab will impact foreign brands: “4. More Limits on Conspicuous Consumption: The anti-corruption campaign that President Xi initiated back in 2013 will continue to affect the consumption behaviors of an estimated 112 million government personnel” (07 Mar).

Solidarity in sustainability: Fashion’s new generation of eco-responsibility: “Collaboration, integration and evolution were top of the agenda for a panel on “Sustainable Style: Fashion for the future” on Tuesday evening, on the final day of the international fashion season” (07 Mar). [Ed’s note: attendees included Kering, Stella McCartney, London College of Fashion, and Common Objective.]

The dangerous social cycle that makes us buy things we don't need: “As [French philosopher Diderot] remarks in his essay titled Regrets For My Old Dressing Gown, “I was the absolute master of my old robe. I have become the slave of the new one”” (07 Mar). [Ed’s note: Diderot wrote his essay in 1769.]

UN assesses role of fashion at SDG event: “The UN has held an event in Geneva, Switzerland to discuss the impact of the fashion industry on the organisation’s target of achieving its self-imposed SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals)” (07 Mar – subscription required to read full article). [Ed’s note: See event agenda here, and also The dirty industry of fast fashion is causing an environmental “emergency” (06 Mar) for an overview from Quartz magazine, and UN forum says fashion industry an environmental emergency (07 Mar) from WWD.]

Sourcemap travels to Dhaka to launch massive digital mapping of Bangladeshi garment factories: “The Sourcemap team travelled to Dhaka, Bangladesh last month to kick off the door-to-door census of every garment factory in the country: a Digital Ready-Made Factory Map of Bangladesh” (06 Mar).

ILO launches online access to legal research and training for developing countries: “Researchers, law students, policymakers, judges and legal experts in low- and middle-income countries can now get free or low-cost online access to legal information and training from the world’s leading academic publishers” (06 Mar).

Taking on 'microfiber' pollution, a laundry room at a time: ““Blaming the industry or the government won’t solve the problems,” said Alexander Nolte, co-founder of Guppyfriend, a polyamide washing bag designed to prevent tiny threads from escaping” (06 Mar). [Ed’s note: article also mentions Cora Ball. Also: “While there’s no question microfibres are escaping into the environment, it’s unclear how harmful they are.”]

Helsinki to host the first 100% sustainable fashion week: “The first 100% sustainable fashion week will be held from July 20 to 25” (05 Mar).

Why I stopped advocating Fairtrade: “Professor Christopher Cramer from SOAS university conducted research evaluating the impact Fairtrade has had on its producers in Uganda and Ethiopia to find some shocking results” (03 Mar). [Ed’s note: not targeted specifically at clothing, but issues raised are relevant to all Fairtrade products.]

MANUFACTURERS

DyStar launches resource saving dyeing process: “In contrast to the standard PDTPS process, [DyStar’s] Cadira Reactive/Disperse Continuous does not require a separate reduction clearing process and thus saves more than 40% chemicals, water and energy”(13 Mar).

100 lawyers prepared to tackle industrial pollution in Indonesia: “The Indonesian Advocates Association (Peradi) in Surakarta, Central Java, has prepared 100 lawyers to file both criminal and civil lawsuits against textile company PT Rayon Utama Makmur (RUM) over alleged environmental pollution” (12 Mar).

Hundreds in Pakistan raise a rumpus about canals, rivers contamination: “[R]esidents of Muzaffarabad, Shershah and Shujabad areas staged a demonstration against release of industrial waste and toxic water in canals and Chenab River [into which flow effluent from] textile [factories] and leather [works and] tanneries” (11 Mar).

303 Tuscans award Angelico for sustainable fabrics: “Angelico [has] received the “303 TUSCANS” award for ethical fashion. It is awarded to manufactures of fabrics made from natural materials, following the principles of ethical fashion and having transparent supply chain” (09 Mar).

Bolger & O’Hearn launches OmniBloq: [Specialty textile chemical firm Bolger & O’Hearn] has launched OmniBloq, a revolutionary Stormproof/breathable performance finish [with] responsible use of resources [and] garment recyclability” (08 Mar).

Industry praises EU’s ‘sensible’ draft restriction on CMRs in textiles: “But consumer NGO says proposal overlooks problematic chemicals” (08 Mar).

Digital flow meters to help civic body control wastage of water in Surat: “At present, the textile mills in [Surat, a city in Gujarat, India] consume over 50% of water supplied by SMC [Surat Municipal Corporation]” (08 Mar).

DuPont Tate & Lyle grows to meet demand for biomaterials: “DuPont Tate & Lyle Bio Products, LLC, a joint venture between DuPont and Tate & Lyle, will expand its manufacturing facility in Loudon, Tennessee to increase annual production of bio-based 1,3-propanediol by 35 million pounds” (07 Mar).

Dow launches ECOFAST Pure sustainable textile treatment: “The Dow Chemical Company has launched ECOFAST Pure sustainable textile treatment at the American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC) International Conference [last] week. This breakthrough technology enables unique, brighter colours on natural textiles and significantly improves resource efficiency during the dyeing process” (07 Mar).

Three textile firms join ZDHC Roadmap to Zero Programme: “The new textile organisations joining as the value chain affiliates are ACS Textiles Bangladesh Ltd., Salirone and Santori Pellami Spa” (05 Mar).

THE SUPPLY CHAIN

Bangladesh

Bangladesh Alliance factories completing upgrades 07 Mar to 14 MarAboni Knit Wear Ltd., Creative Wash Ltd., Tarasima Apparels Ltd., N.K.K. Knitwear Ltd., RDM Apparels Ltd., Badgetex Apparels Ltd. (14 Mar). [Ed’s note: this list is gleaned from the Bangladesh Alliance Twitter feed.]

124 RMG units run in risky buildings: “One hundred and twenty-four readymade garment factories in Dhaka and Chittagong have been running their business in risky buildings, ignoring the government order for closures, said officials of the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments” (12 Mar).

RMG workers block road for due wages: “About 2,000 workers of Barnali Fabrics said they found the factory closed in the morning although their wages of three months remain outstanding. The road was blocked for three hours, creating traffic chaos” (11 Mar).

Women in the workplace: employment without empowerment: “[F]emale employment in Bangladesh has seen a 35% increase, reaching 18.1 million from 2008 to 2017” (08 Mar).

Fire in spinning mill cotton warehouse: “[T]he fire broke out at the cotton godown of Mosharraf Composite Textile Ltd. [in Gazipur]” (08 Mar). More here, here and here. [Ed’s note: not to be confuse with another fire in Gazipur several days earlier, which was at Kader Synthetic Fibers.]

Errant RMG units to face legal action in May: “The government has decided to take legal action against the readymade garment factories inspected under the national initiative that will fail to complete remediation work by April” (07 Mar).

Making RMG female workforce tech-savvy: “The country’s apparel industry should make coordinated efforts in order to achieve a more flexible, demand-driven and inclusive skill development system” (07 Mar).

Minimum wage for tannery workers set at Tk 12,800: “The government has announced Tk 12,800 as the minimum monthly wage for the country’s tannery workers with an increase by 46 per cent from the existing Tk 8,740” (06 Mar). [Ed’s note: they had demanded Tk16,000, the same as some garment worker unions are now seeking.]

Women losing more jobs to automation: CPD study: “The automation of manufacturing reduced the female workers' participation ratio in the garment sector to 60.8 percent in 2016 from 64 percent in 2015” (04 Mar).

16 per cent of surveyed RMG factories have foreign staff: CPD: “Some 16 per cent of the surveyed 252 garment factories have employed foreign staff in almost all sections” (03 Mar).

Cambodia

Workers fired after trying to unionise: “Sun Hsu factory … which employs roughly 1,700 workers, makes children’s clothes for American brands The Children’s Place and Carter’s [has been accused of firing several workers who tried to start a union there]” (13 Mar).

Garment worker dies in crash, 46 others injured: “One garment worker died and nearly 50 others were injured yesterday [12 Mar] when the truck ferrying them to work hit a wheel that had detached from a dump truck” (13 Mar). [Ed’s note: the second truck crash in a week, see below.]

Cambodia’s women face growing pay gap, limits on opportunities: “A new report from Better Factories Cambodia [last week] found that the majority of factories do not promote women to supervisor positions, which can in turn lead to women experiencing sexual and verbal harassment in the workplace” (09 Mar). [Ed’s note: the new report, Towards Gender Equality: Lessons from factory compliance assessments 2016-2017, can be downloaded in full here.]

Workers unpaid due to employer gambling debts: “Prime Minister Hun Sen said [last week] that some garment workers have not been paid because their employers shut down the factories and fled after they lost money gambling” (08 Mar).

Garment workers to get pensions at age 60: “Prime Minister Hun Sen has told workers from the garment and footwear industry during his recent weekly visits that they would get retirement benefits starting in 2019” (08 Mar).

GMAC honours female workers: “The Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia [said] that the women working in this sector are heroines who are making an important contribution to the economy and in reducing poverty” (08 Mar).

Truck crash injures 63 garment workers: “[63] garment workers suffered serious and slight injuries when the trucks they were travelling in to their factories crashed” (06 Mar).

Garment workers at shuttered Cambodia factories try to cash in on government compensation offer: “After a surprise announcement last week from the Ministry of Labour that it would pay employees from a group of shuttered factories whose owners had fled, garment workers and union leaders are scrambling to figure out which factories qualify for compensation” (06 Mar).

China

Factory handbag factory strike intensifies: “Over a thousand workers at Shimen Hand Bag [the Chinese name for Simone Handbag] factory in Guangzhou on strike since 4 March demand back payment of housing provident fund and social insurance before end of March, management counter proposes 15 June. Shimen Hand Bag has been downsizing operations” (13 Mar). [Ed’s note: Simone Handbag, a Korean company whose owner recently became a billionaire (see a Forbes article about it from 06 March here), has produced for Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs and Coach.]

India

Complaints committees to be mandatory: “[T]he government has made it mandatory for all garment factory owners to set up an internal complaints committee to look into instances of harassment of women employees” (12 Mar)

Couple released from bonded labour: “The Revenue Department on Monday [last week] ordered the release of a couple from bonded labour from a power loom unit [near Sulur, Tamil Nadu]” (07 Mar).

Has cotton failed the farmers in Telangana yet again? “Cotton farmers from the district, who were hopeful of a good yield and had planned to clear the debts, are once again disappointed” (06 Mar).

Fire at ginning factory: “Several heaps of cotton were gutted in a fire at a private ginning factory in Sonipur village near Shadnagar of Rangareddy district [in Telangana] (05 Mar).

Indonesia

Indonesia’s textile workers face a tough battle for severance pay: “When 41-year-old Saepudin read in the newspaper that Jaba Garmindo, the Indonesian factory where he worked, had been sued by two banks, he knew something was wrong” (13 Mar). [Ed’s note: article mentions Uniqlo, Nike and Adidas. See also this Tweet from the ITUC.]

Jordan

Migrant factory workers centre marks fourth anniversary: “Jordanian and foreign officials on Friday [9 Mar] celebrated the fourth anniversary of Irbid’s Al Hassan Workers’ Centre, the first centre for garment migrant workers in the Middle East” (11 Mar).

Malaysia

Walmart Foundation and RBA build responsible recruitment market for migrant labour: “The Walmart Foundation has granted the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) Foundation $1 million to help build a robust and responsible recruitment marketplace for migrant labor in Malaysia and its surrounding nations” (07 Mar).

Myanmar

Some businesses see positive impact from higher minimum wage: “Despite the higher costs involved, some businesses see positive changes as a result of the higher wages [a 33.3% increase was implemented last week]. Daw Htay Htay, who runs a small local garment factory, said her workers have now become more responsive and responsible at their jobs” (09 Mar).

Caution urged on labour disputes: “Problems between employers and employees at factories in Yangon Region have to be handled prudently, and employers should not demand that the government crack down on labour protests, Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Thein said [last week] “(09 Mar).

Nicaragua

Sae-A Tecnotex illegally dismisses workers: “Textile factory Sae-A Tecnotex in Nicaragua has illegally dismissed 8 workers. The union federation FESITEX claims that the dismissals were a violation of labor contracts” (09 Mar – in Spanish).

Pakistan

Lack of safety measures: Two killed, four injured in cylinder blast: “Two labourers were killed while four others were injured in a cylinder blast in a garments factory in Saed Park, Shahdara [in Lahore]” (12 Mar).

Factory guard kills labour leader: “A security guard of power loom factory on Thursday [08 Mar] allegedly killed a labour leader at Gojra” (09 Mar).

Seven more MLOs depose in Baldia factory case: “An antiterrorism court recorded on Thursday [08 Mar] evidence of seven more medico-legal officers (MLOs) in the Baldia factory fire case” (09 Mar).

Over 60% of capital’s workplaces violate labour laws: “[The] findings were disclosed by the Women Workers Alliance at a convention on women in workplaces” (06 Mar).

Vietnam

Vietnamese workers find new jobs after S Korean boss disappears owing $1.37 mil: “A Hong Kong firm has offered to pay 600 of them $220 per month, but many are still clinging on to government support” (12 Mar). [Ed’s note: the Hong Kong company is PouSung Vietnam. The South Korean firm is KL Texwell Vina – see below.]

Province budget to pay for workers’ social insurance: “The People’s Committee of southern Đồng Nai Province on Sunday [11 Mar] decided to spend VNĐ1.4 billion (US$61,500) from its budget to pay for the social insurance of workers of a garment company [KL Texwell Vina, whose] director has fled to South Korea” (12 Mar).

Dialogue to solve workers’ problems: “Workers of the South Korean textile company KL Texwell Vina … were advised by local authorities on how to terminate labour contracts as their employer failed to pay them salary and year-end bonus” (08 Mar).

Vietnamese workers abandoned by S. Korean employer promised new jobs: “15 companies have agreed to take in [KL Texwell Vina workers] after their employer disappeared without paying them salaries” (06 Mar).

(Photo PatternPicturesCCO)

Disclaimer: The Fashion Sustainability Week in Review (FSWIR) is a weekly roundup of sustainability news items relevant to the fashion, apparel, textile and related industries. The views and opinions expressed in the FSWIR by individual authors and/or media outlets cited do not necess

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