The New(s) Standard - November 29th, 2016
The Climate Change Problem No One Is Talking About: Gas Guzzling Clothes
Zady CEO Maxine Bédat offers insight into the state of the apparel industry with a brief history on how it came to be the second most polluting industry in the world - contributing 10% of global carbon emissions. While addressing the fashion industry’s negative impact on our planet and its contributions to climate change in the form of “gas-guzzling clothes,” Maxine highlights gender equality issues that affect both the women who make our clothing and the women who buy them. Read the full Op-Ed on Fast Company
Women in the Garment Industry - What this Industry Veteran Wants You to Know.
In an interview with Nazma Akter, the 32 year veteran of the Bangladeshi garment industry discusses the state of the industry for female workers. Nazma began working in factories at the age of 11 and discusses the hardships she faced while working at such a young age in these conditions. Despite expressing her desire to attend school, Nazma and her mother were quickly shut out by the forceful male figures in their lives who did not appreciate women exercising their rights. In this article, Nazma speaks about what women in the garment industry want you to know and takes us deep into a world we don’t often hear about. Read the full interview on Refinery29
Zady - The gender equality discrepancies that lie between female consumers and female garment workers is, if anything, ironic. We advocate for equal pay and preach about gender equality, but then proceed to purchase clothing made by women who do not earn a living wage. The fashion industry is the largest employer of women with only 2% earning a living wage. In addition, most high paying jobs - often referred to as “skilled labor” or managerial positions - are awarded to men, signaling a gender bias that runs deep within the industry. While we advocate for gender equality at home, we must also understand how our purchases contradict those very efforts and our role as consumers in this good fight.
H&M: The Master of Disguise
The Fashion Law dives into the hypocrisy of H&M’s recent design award by highlighting the fast fashion corporation’s continued green-washing and failures to make any significant or viable sustainable improvements to its supply chain. The article urges consumers to take surface level commitments such as their bolstering of young designers and their questionable “conscious” collection at face value. It encourages us to think critically about “well-packaged” PR efforts and to look past them for deeper, more meaningful adjustments in our quest for change. Read the full article on The Fashion Law
Zady - We look to our young designers as the next generation of innovators that will propel the industry in a more sustainable, thoughtful and considered path. This next generation will determine what kind of industry we will be for the generations still to come and it is up to us - as large corporations and small businesses alike to begin setting that example. As an industry we must challenge these young individuals to think differently about what makes up a truly sustainable supply chain and to think critically about the current practices exhibited in this business of faster, mass-produced fashion.
Progress in Bangladesh? Look Again.
In the years following the deadly collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory in Bangladesh, retailers were quick to make promises and pledged to address the hazardous working conditions within their factories. Last week, passing grades were awarded to several factories by the Alliance for Bangladesh Worker Safety. Progress, right? Not necessarily.
A new report titled “Dangerous Delays on Worker Safety” found that of the 175 factories labelled as “on track,” 99 were falling behind on safety categories. Here are the numbers: 62% of factories are still lacking viable fire exits; 62% are operating without properly functioning fire alarm systems and 47% were found to have major, uncorrected structural problems. The number of workers employed by retailers operating factories without viable or with compromised fire exit systems is currently estimated to be 121,047 workers for Walmart and an additional 74,353 working for The Gap. Read The Guardian’s Exclusive report