Friday, 26 April 2013

Join The 1% Campaign!

The ongoing humanitarian crisis in Bangladesh has brought into stark relief a situation that we in the ethical fashion game have known and campaigned about for a very long time. Stories of worker abuse emerge on a weekly basis, with some of the biggest names in retail fashion asked again and again: what good are your ethical policies if this carries on happening? When Jeremy Paxman starts asking those sorts of questions on Newsnight, as he did last night, you know that things have got serious. It's telling, but not surprising, that none of the big fashion names stuck their head above the parapet to reply.
With both Zara and Adidas under the microscope again for mistreatment of their overseas workforce, and Gap attacked by Greenpeace for toxic spills, it seems like every big name has made a huge noise about their ethical profile without making the effort to ensure that what they say in the fancy presentations actually happens down on the ground. The green washing is simply unable to keep the stains out.
Ms. Wanda's Wardrobe, a long-time lock on the Pier32 newsfeed, has decided that enough is enough. They've launched the 1% Campaign, asking the big fashion companies to put their money where their mouths are. The manifesto is simple.

  • A minimum of 1% of profits invested in responsible sourcing
  • Grants available to factories to enable them to make the necessary changes
  • More regular and unannounced audits of factories
  • Better working with NGOs and trade unions to implement policies that have meaningful benefit to workers
If a company already gives 1%, the campaign is asking for another 1%. The money and time that are being asked for are peanuts compared to PR and marketing budgets. Ultimately, this sort of commitment is likely to have a much greater effect on the company image as a whole.

Fast fashion and its dodgy practices are under scrutiny like never before, and they're starting to panic. It's time to fix this. Get yourself over to the 1% Campaign homepage, sign the petition, and let the big fashion companies know that we won't tolerate another Rana Plaza disaster.

The 1% Campaign.

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