Fashion Revolution, are we ready?
Enjoy buying on the cheap? A new TV, shirt or pair of shoes? Whatever it may be, it is human nature to bargain-hunt. But what is the real cost of bargain shopping? Its time for a fashion revolution.
In Berlin, Germany, the leaders of the NGO Fashion Revolution conducted an experiment earlier this year, selling t-shirts for only €2 in a public square.
Before purchasing the product, customers are shown a video that portrays the working conditions of a “sweatshop” in Asia, in which employees earn just $ 0.13 USD per hour:
Many are working up to 16 hours per day without being able to earn enough money to make a decent living.
Many responsible consumers decided to make a donation instead of purchasing a shirt at this price.
This video was published on April 24, 2015 – Fashion Revolution Day. This day commemorates the fall of Rana Square in Bangladesh in 2013, killing more than 1,000 workers in a sweatshop that produces for stores such as JC Penney, Benetton, Wal-Mart, Zara, and more.
These sweatshop workers are often minors, grossly underpaid working 16 hours a day. The NGO wants to encourage people to start asking questions about their clothes, to know where products come from and under what conditions they were developed.
“We’re not asking people to boycott their favorite stores, we have to change the fashion industry from the inside. People should start asking: ‘Who made my clothes and how were they produced?’” said the founder of Fashion Revolution .
Most recently on December 2nd, Fashion Revolution launched its first white paper, It’s Time for a Fashion Revolution, for the European Year for Development. The paper sets out the need for more transparency across the fashion industry, from seed to waste and contextualises Fashion Revolution’s efforts, the organisation’s philosophy and how the public, the industry, policymakers and others around the world can work towards a safer, cleaner, more fair and beautiful future for fashion.
The paper was launched at a joint event with the Fair Trade Advocacy Office in Brussels and hosted by Arne Leitz, Member of the European Parliament to mark the European Year for Development.
“Whether you are someone who buys and wears fashion (that’s pretty much everyone) or you work in the industry along the supply chain somewhere or if you’re a policymaker who can have an impact on legal requirements, you are accountable for the impact fashion has on people’s lives. Our vision is is a fashion industry that values people, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure” explained Sarah Ditty on behalf of Fashion Revolution.
Download the White Paper here.
Watch the new video for the European Year for Development at the event: Why We Need a Fashion Revolution.