The race to the bottom must stop
Last week’s Black Friday opened the sales season with huge discounts on clothing and other products. Solidaridad calculated that despite rising inflation in the Netherlands, the purchase prices for clothes and shoes from Asia fell to ¤2.53 in 2021, less than the average consumer price of a loaf of bread. "It’s a race to the bottom," says Solidaridad’s director Heske Verburg. "As clothes from Asia become cheaper, there is even less room to reward the makers of clothes decently."
Higher retail prices for clothes are not caused by clothing producers, but by rising energy and personnel costs in the Netherlands. The choice of shops, fashion brands and consumers for ever cheaper clothes has severe consequences for makers and the environment. Consumers buy more clothes, but the quality is often poor due to low purchase prices. The downside of low unit prices is the short period clothes are wearable.
European petition for living wage textile workers
In global clothing, textile and footwear production, millions of textile workers do not receive a living wage, while fashion brands and retailers make billions in profits. This needs to change! Therefore, FSD’s partner Solidaridad joined the Good Clothes Fair Pay campaign , a European citizens’ initiative for a living wage for textile workers. During Black Friday, the FSD Spearhead visited Solidaridad’s Signastore , which was set up to increase publicity.
This petition asks the EU for new European legislation. Such legislation is a first step towards living wages. According to Heske Verburg: "Only European legislation can stop the downward spiral of low prices, low quality and poor production conditions. We want to put that on the agenda in Brussels. Getting your signature is a very powerful way to demand change." Read more about the campaign and sign here.