Human trafficking exists. We all know this, and most feel powerless to stop it.
Take the Tamil Nadu Region of India. Over 200,000 unmarried women and girls aged between 14 and 23 are trafficked to work in spinning, weaving and dyeing mills. The workers suffer long working hours, hazardous conditions, physical and sexual abuse, with only 35% ever receiving payment.*
That is in just one region of one country.
In fact, the production house that is in the process of making Visible's first t-shirts is in that very region. This makes the above statistics even more real to us at Visible. Although we can be sure no slaves are involved in making Visible t-shirts, it is morally wrong that any t-shirt made by any brand can include cotton made by slaves.
The whole industry needs to change so that no clothes anywhere in the world contain cotton made by individuals who have been trafficked.
A little over one week ago we got together with ten people who felt the same and were ready to act. This newly formed team comprises the Founder of the Ethical Fashion Collective, experienced campaigners on poverty and justice, consumers who care, and us.
#mynextbuy is a simple and powerful idea. Visit #mynextbuy and play your part in stopping human trafficking by making a pledge, and asking brands to do the same.
1) Sign the petition asking clothing brands to be transparent, have contracts with all employees, and be audited.
2) Commit to making sure that the next item of clothing you buy is more ethical than the last.
If everyone commits to buying clothes that are ethically sourced, and clothing brands follow suit, then change will happen.
We are at a key moment in history for fairness within the clothing sector. The Modern Slavery Bill is currently going through the UK Parliament. Supply chain transparency is a crucial part of this and is at risk of being cut from the conversation.
We all need to play our part - governments, brands, consumers - then trafficking will be a thing of the past. Please play your part right now by pledging to act.