The Action, Collaboration, Transformation (ACT) agreement has announced new deals between individual brands and the global union IndustriALL in Cambodia on wages.

These bilateral agreements between individual brands and IndustriALL Global Union, are said to mark a significant milestone in the move towards the first-ever brand-supported collective bargaining agreement in the garment and footwear sector. 

ACT said the new agreements demonstrate strong leadership from brands, employers and unions and that the deal could “signal the potential for a new era in wage approaches, freedom of association and responsible purchasing practices”. ACT described the deal as a “call to action” for all brands sourcing from Cambodia.

Mira Neumaier, executive director at ACT, commented: “The individual agreements have the potential for broad impact on the apparel sector, setting higher standards and conditions and representing a new era for supply chain industrial relations.”

IndustriALL’s general secretary Atle Hoie added: “These agreements that we now have with brands to support collective agreements in the textiles and clothing sector in Cambodia are innovative and groundbreaking. We have worked on this for many years, and we finally see the result. This shows that when you take time to build trust and understanding you can achieve great things.”

ACT will present its new approach to supply chain industrial relations at the Global Fashion Summit: Copenhagen Edition on 23 May. Its session will cover support for wage improvements, better working conditions and how to future-proof the industry.

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In March 2024, UK supermarket Sainsbury’s, along with its brands Tu Clothing, Habitat and Argos, joined the ACT agreement as part of its commitment to upholding living wages in its supply chain.

Also earlier this year, Cambodia garment manufacturer Pontus Footwear, a supplier to US apparel conglomerate VF Corporation, reinstated the jobs of three garment workers in February 2024, after the workers were previously dismissed for joining a union.