Blog: Leonie BarrieSatire condemns 'sweatshop' brands

Leonie Barrie | 25 June 2010

How would you feel if you turned up on your first day at work, only to be told by your new boss that because you were a bit late, you wouldn't be paid any wages for that day? Or that you mustn't talk, answer back, complain, make any excuses, get pregnant or leave or eat at your desk? That your working day starts at 5.00 am for a standard 14-hour shift, with no lunch or toilet breaks? And that you'll get your first pay cheque in a couple of months?

A bit far-fetched in the western world, perhaps, but is all part of the abuse suffered by overseas workers producing goods for British supermarkets according to anti-poverty charity War on Want.

The group - whose research has shown workers making clothes in Bangladesh for Tesco and Asda earned as little as 7p an hour for up to 80-hour weeks - has launched new films which make fun of overseas sweatshops as part of its campaign for a watchdog to prevent UK supermarkets abusing suppliers' workers.

It's a serious subject, but one that serious campaigns have so far failed to eradicate. And the hope is that by turning the issue into a satire it'll be easier to get the message across that some workers' shameful pay and conditions are beyond a joke.

Welcome to Cheapco - First Day at Work


Ethiopia unrest a sourcing risk?

Fashion retailer H&M and UK based glove and leather manufacturer Pittards both say they are monitoring the situation in Ethiopia closely after the country's government declared a state of emergency af...


Asia facing up to increased competition

Increasing competition for garment sourcing contracts is seeing China not only being challenged by other countries in Asia, but by sub-Saharan African and even Russian suppliers too. And it is pushing...


Cambodia raises garment worker wages

The monthly minimum wage for workers in Cambodia's textile, garment and footwear sector is set to rise to $153 from January next year, following a vote on the issue last week. The increase marks a ris...


Sportswear initiatives start to take shape

The results of two highly-anticipated initiatives in the sportswear sphere were revealed last week: the launch of Under Armour’s new UAS lifestyle brand and the first pair of running shoes created at ...

just-style homepage

Forgot your password?