Author: Kendall Benton-Collins | Published: April 24, 2017
When faced with complexity, we have a tendency to bury our heads in the sand – an ancient survival mechanism perhaps? Creating a better, fairer world is hard. Fashion Revolution Week is a great way to begin.
The threads that bind us
The older I get, the more connections I see in the world around me. We live in a vast interconnected universe where seemingly disparate topics are in fact intimately linked on some level. Social justice, the multi-billion dollar fashion industry, environmental conservation and animal welfare – all of these things come into play every time we decide to purchase an item of clothing. It’s kind of overwhelming isn’t it? We can unwittingly impact on the world around us on a daily basis, without ever fully comprehending the consequences of our actions.
I can’t tell you that if you do x y and z everything will be fine and all fashion supply chains will become transparent and equitable tomorrow. But the good news is that we are not powerless. We can create positive change, which will lead to a socially and environmentally bright future. I know that we can do this. I also know that it won’t be easy…but it will be worth it!
Join the global revolution
About 75 million people work directly in the fashion and textiles industry. Many are subject to exploitation; verbal and physical abuse, working in unsafe conditions, with very little pay. On April 24 2013, 1138 garment workers were killed when the Rana Plaza complex collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh. People all around the world are still suffering as a direct result of our fashion supply chain.
Fashion Revolution is a non-profit organisation which is saying, enough is enough! All year round Fashion Revolution campaigns for systemic reform of the industry with a special focus on the need for greater transparency in the fashion supply chain.
Fashion Revolution Co-founder Orsola de Castro said:
“Have you ever wondered who makes your clothes? How much they’re paid and what their lives are like? Our clothes have gone on a long journey before they hit store shelves, passing through the hands of cotton farmers, spinners, weavers, dyers, and sewers. Eighty percent of them are women between the ages of 18 and 24. Many of the people who make our clothes live in poverty. This needs to change.”
Fashion Revolution Week (24 – 30 April) will bring people from all over the world together to ask brands #whomademyclothes, and to demand greater transparency to help improve the working conditions and wages of the people who make our clothes.
How to get involved
A simple but powerful step you can take during Fashion Revolution Week (and beyond) is to take a selfie showing your clothing label, tag the brand on social media and ask them #whomademyclothes? The important thing is to be persistent! Keep asking until you receive a satisfactory answer.