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The annual Fashion Revolution Week kicks off globally today

WORDS BY MAGGIE ZHOU

In a climate that needs this now more than ever.

Fashion Revolution is the world’s largest fashion activism movement and every year it shakes things up with a week-long dedicated fight to raise awareness for a fairer, safer and more transparent industry. 

In its seventh year running, the challenge to combat fast fashion still remains a crucial issue, even more so while we are in the midst of a global pandemic.

Carry Somers, co-founder and global operations director of Fashion Revolution urged that “the need for citizens to hold brands and retailers to account is more pressing than ever before. Over the past weeks, we have seen the devastating impact of brands’ buying practices on some of the most vulnerable workers overseas.”

Who’s behind it? 

Fashion Revolution is a global movement that launched as a response to the Rana Plaza factory collapse in Bangladesh on April 24, 2013. Over 1,100 people died, and another 2,500 people were injured – the victims being mostly young women. They call for a clean, safe, fair, transparent and accountable fashion industry, one that values its workers, the environment, creativity and profit in equal measure.

What’s it about?

From Monday 20 April to Sunday 26 April, Fashion Revolution is focusing on the four main areas of consumption, composition, conditions and collective action, essentially to help the fashion industry become more ethical and sustainable.

It aims to shift consumers’ ideas of consumption and to question their own purchasing habits in order to protect natural resources. It’s calling for a focus on clothing’s composition – for consumers to question what makes up their clothes and to support innovative, low-impact materials over non-renewable resources.

Fashion Revolution is highlighting the fact that there are more people in slavery today than at any point in history. The conditions of many factories are unacceptable – drastic, transparent change needs to be fought for to help those in exploitation across entire supply chains. It emphasises the importance of collective action; when individuals work together, there’s a better chance at systematic change. 

How can you get involved?

Use your personal voice to challenge the industry and to educate others. 

  • Email, Tweet or publicly post on Instagram tagging brands and designers, calling for the transparency and protection of workers, and asking what makes up their garments
  • Write a postcard to a policymaker asking what they are doing to help improve the fashion industry
  • Download some of Fashion Revolution’s free educational resources to help educate yourself and others
  • Donate money towards Fashion Revolution to help continue its important work
  • Digitally check-in and tag your location on Facebook or Instagram to Rana Plaza, Savar, Bangladesh on Friday, April 24 to show your solidarity with workers, past and present, who are fighting for fair rights and conditions

Use the hashtag #WhoMadeMyClothes to ask designers and brands what they’re doing to take care of their workers and to advocate for a more transparent supply chain. 

Ask specific designers and brands #WhatsInMyClothes when challenging the sourcing of materials and environmental impacts of certain fabrics. 

And celebrate your own clothing that’s well-loved, vintage or made ethically and share your story with the hashtag #LovedClothesLast.

fashionrevolution.org

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