Thursday 6 November 2014

Fawcett Society Update

A twist in the tale of the Fawcett Society scandal regarding the ethical production of their iconic t-shirt. This, from Fawcett deputy CEO Eva Neitzert...

We are pleased to confirm that we have today seen expansive and current evidence from Whistles that the CMT factory in Mauritius they used to produce our ‘This is what a feminist looks like’ T-shirt conforms to ethical standards.
We have been particularly pleased to receive evidence that:
- 100% of workers are paid above the government-mandated minimum wage and all workers are paid according to their skills and years of service.
- The standard working week is 45 hours, and workers are compensated (at a higher rate of pay) for any overtime worked.
- There is a high retention of staff and employees are offered training and development.
- An audit into the CMT factory was carried out in October 2014 by an independent not-for-profit organisation and this did not reveal any material concerns on the working conditions, the welfare or the health and safety of workers.
- Workers are able to join a union and there is a union presence in the factory.
The evidence we have seen categorically refutes the assertion that the ‘This is what a feminist looks like’ T-shirts produced by Whistles were made in a sweatshop.
Whilst we have confidence in the evidence provided to us, we are currently working closely with an international trade union body to scrutinise it so that we can be absolutely assured of its provenance, authenticity and that all findings are robust and factual.
Further, whilst Fawcett has a UK remit, we are nonetheless acutely concerned with the inequalities women across the globe face. We recognise that investment in developing countries is vital and support this provided decent labour standards are adhered to.
We will continue to work with Elle and Whistles on this project.
Looks like the ball's back in the Mail On Sunday's court on this one...

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