BANGKOK — Ahead of the fourth anniversary of the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh, Human Rights Watch called on apparel and footwear brands to join a pledge promising transparency in their supply chain.Signing on to the pledge would require brands and retailers to provide a regularly updated list of their manufacturers. Details should include the address of the facilities, the type of products made and the number of workers hired by each supplier factory. This pledge was hashed out by a coalition of nine labor and human rights organizations and unions.The call for transparency in supply chain has been especially urgent after the Rana Plaza building collapsed on April 24, 2013. Leaving 1,100 garment workers dead and injuring more than 2,000, the industrial disaster brought into the fore the responsibility and leverage that firms have when it comes to preventing workplace disasters, like structural collapses or factory fires.RELATED: 20 Fashion Companies Scored on Transparency >> Because of a lack of transparency in the global supply chain, labor rights activists and investigators had to interview surviving workers to figure out which brands were being produced in Rana Plaza’s factories.“One of the things that emerged painfully after Rana Plaza was that people were searching in rubble for brand labels just to find out which brands the factories were producing for,” said Aruna Kashyap, senior counsel for the women’s rights division at Human Rights Watch. “We shouldn’t be doing that. We shouldn’t have to search around for labels to find out who people are producing for.”According to the report published Thursday by the New York-based human rights organization, publishing a supplier list would also allow workers and labor advocates to alert companies about labor abuses happening in their supply factory.“An apparel company that does not publish its supplier factory information contributes to possible delays in workers or other stakeholders being able to access the company’s complaint mechanisms or other remedies,” the report said, explaining that labor rights activist have to spend a lot of time trying to determine brand labels to figure out the sourcing companies. “Meanwhile, they lose valuable time and put workers at risk of retaliation and continued exposure to dangerous or abusive working conditions.”RELATED: Adidas Rebuts Tabloid Report on Yeezy's China Factory >> Out of the 17 companies that promise to be in full compliance of the transparency pledge, some — including H&M, Levis, Nike and Adidas — were already following this practice. Others have signed on and have until December 2017 to put up their suppliers list on their web site. (An example is British e-tailer Asos, which published a list last month.)[caption id="attachment_10870763" align="alignnone" width="1024"] A crowd gathered where Rana Plaza used to stand. The building collapsed on April 24, 2013.[/caption]There remains 55 companies that either fall short of full transparency or simply have made no indication that they are willing to make their supplier list public.The 25 companies in the latter group include Wal-Mart, The Children’s Place, Primark and Carrefour — four retailers that were linked to factories in the Rana Plaza tragedy.Alonzo Suson, Bangladesh director of the Solidarity Center, a labor rights organization affiliated with AFL-CIO, said their unwillingness to take part in full supply chain transparency is “a shame.”“What they’re saying is, ‘We want to be hands-off and not be responsible,’” Suson said.Other retailers such as Urban Outfitters, Forever 21, Ralph Lauren Corp. and Armani Group did not send a response.RELATED: Global Retailers Call for Action on Bangladesh Labor Issues >> Kashyap said some companies cited competition for factories as the reason for their non-disclosure.“But that’s clearly contradicted by other companies who have been publishing it for over a decade, and with more and more companies joining this growing trend,” she said. “This type of concern has long been dispelled.”
In honor the @CFDA’s announcement of @iamnaomicampbell receiving the Fashion Icon Award at the 2018 #CFDAAwards, which will take place on June 4, here’s a #tbt of the supermodel on @michaelkors’ runway in 1991. #wwdfashion #wwdarchive (📷: George Chinsee)
“I was making the guacamole when my scout saw me,” says model @stuckinteenage on being discovered just six months ago while working at @chipotlemexicangrill. Since then Williams has signed with @dnamodels, walked in her first show at @calvinklein and landed on the cover of @vogueitalia – a high point of any model’s career. To read @lisajlockwood’s full interview with the model on her experiences thus far, head to WWD.com – link in bio. (📷: George Chinsee)
“I love the idea of dialogue, period. It’s where I’ve always gotten my inspiration from: hearing other women speak, their journeys and their paths,” said @hereisgina, who delivered the keynote speech during @sxsw for @createcultivate in partnership with @fossil. For her two panels, Rodriguez chose female empowering, female-led and female entrepreneurs to focus on. Head to WWD.com to read more about her thoughts on Time’s Up, growing up in a family of women and why we “need a girls’ club.” #wwdeye #sxsw (📷: @jgreenery)
Leading luxury brand are shaking things up to keep up with streetwear. Case in point: the arrival of @mrkimjones as artistic director of @diorhomme. Jones, who succeeds @Kris_Van_Assche, is seen as one of the handful of designers who can actually straddle the luxury and streetwear worlds — which could lead to even more changes at established brands. What could this mean for the rest of the menswear landscape? Head to WWD.com to find out what experts predict #wwdfashion (📷: @franckmura)
“It’s like buying groceries. You’re going to buy the best mango, the best mozzarella, the best things. You have to, or others are going to take it all,” said @gabrielahearst on why she uses only the finest fabrics. Last week, Hearst received her first @cfda nomination for Womenswear Designer of the Year, and earlier this month she opened a permanent showroom in Paris. To read @jessiredale’s interview with the designer and find out why this is shaping up to be a big year for her, head to WWD.com. #wwdfashion (📷: @francoisgoize)
“It’s an interesting thing, playing a younger version of your mother. It’s an interesting concept. I adore my mom and love her in every capacity, but it was just something that had never crossed my mind,” says @anniemstarke on playing a young Joan Castleman in “The Wife.” The same role will be played by her mother Glenn Close. Read more about her growing up in the film industry as the daughter of producer John H. Starke and Close and what she has planned for the future #wwdeye (📷: @nataliamantini)
@asics is launching a new streetwear sneaker inspired by its latest ambassador, @steveaoki. The Hyper-Kenzen x Aoki, which will launch at @footlocker stores exclusively tomorrow, is a slip-on style that incorporates the brand’s proprietary Gel technology through beads integrated into the midsole for comfort and endurance. Read the full story on WWD.com.