Lamar addressed the letter to the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, urging the government to:

  • Re-double its efforts to inspect brick kilns and ensure compliance with Cambodia’s labour/environmental laws;
  • Evaluate waste disposal pathways and ensure compliance with all applicable waste disposal rules and regulations;
  • Support initiatives to improve/expand Cambodia’s waste disposal system;
  • Secure the release of bonded labourers in the brick kiln industry from their debt;
  • Make efforts to transfer any child labourers in the brick kiln industry to appropriate schooling;
  • Support brick kilns in addressing occupational safety and health as well as environmental impacts; and
  • Engage, as needed, the International Labor Organization (ILO) and other international institutions to support the transition to more responsible practices.

AAFA’s Lamar highlighted that civil society reports and media claim that there is a widespread presence of child labour, bonded labour, adverse health conditions and environmental degradation within Cambodia’s brick kiln industry.

The letter noted that there have been allegations of textile waste being illegally used to partially fuel the brick kilns.

Lamar also shared that AAFA’s role in the apparel global market is to stand united against issues including child labour, bonded labour, adverse health conditions and environmental degradation.

Lamar added: “Our industry does not condone the practices described in these reports. Through our collective policies and practices, we work to prevent the illegal use of our branded products, or the waste generated from the production of our products, from being used in this manner. We continue to engage our suppliers to better manage their textile waste.”

Last month, Cambodian human rights organisation, the Cambodian League for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights (LICADHO), collared international garment brands sourcing from Cambodia to bear the responsibility for tackling pre-consumer waste “responsibly” and take action to “end and remedify” the harms caused.

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