Fashion Revolution is a global movement that aims to bring more ethics and sustainability to the fashion industry. April 29 was Fashion Revolution Day and I was able to attend the event held in Nepal, bringing awareness to the negative side of the fashion industry and highlighting businesses that are trying to make a difference.
The Fashion Revolution movement started in 2013 after the Rana Plaza complex, a factory that produced garments for many major clothing stores, collapsed in Bangladesh, killing over 1,100 people. The workers in Rana Plaza had told their management that their building was not structurally safe, but they were forced back in to work.
Many factories are forced to cut corners on things such as safety precautions and employees’ wages to meet the demand for cheap garments. After this tragedy, it was realized even more that there needs to be more transparency in supply chains so that retailers and consumers can be aware of how their clothes are actually being made along with the negative side effects such as exploitation of the workers and pollution of the environment.
The goal of Fashion Revolution is to restructure the fashion industry to make people and the environment a priority, while still creating a profit for businesses.
One of the events held all over the world each year on Fashion Revolution Day, the event in Nepal included over 15 businesses that are all trying to make a difference in the fashion industry, including garment maker Purnaa, who I highlighted last month. It was a fun-filled event with music, food and booths set up for shopping from these businesses (shown above). Shoppers could find anything from jewelry to wool gloves to handbags. It was inspiring to see so many businesses that want to change the fashion industry. Even a heavy rainstorm during the middle of the event didn’t dampen the mood, everyone seemed very happy to be there.
The event was followed the next day by a fashion show, displaying many of the brands that participated in Fashion Revolution Day.
It’s simple for anyone to get involved in Fashion Revolution. Even though the official day has passed for this year, you can still ask your favorite brands about who makes the clothes they sell and what work conditions are like. The way for exploitation of people and pollution of the environment to stop is for more people to take a stand and demand for ethical and sustainable options. Many brands already treat their employees and the environment with respect. There are at least 15 in Nepal, with many more all over the world.