Mortified to see where blouse was made

With all of the attention on the Bangladesh clothing factory collapse, some Canadian consumers are feeling guilty.

I am one of them.

While doing laundry on the weekend, I glanced at a tag on my blouse to see the washing instructions. There I also discovered the garment by Carroll Reed was made in Bangladesh.

I had a moment of anguish.

Although Carroll Reed clothing wasn’t mentioned as a product made in that particularly factory, it’s probably safe to say working conditions at other Bangladesh factories aren’t much better.

So should Canadians take a stand by boycotting companies that have clothes made in Bangladesh, and particularly the Joe Fresh brand made at the collapsed factory?

Should we feel guilty?

My quick negative reaction came before I even thought about it. I was just checking the washing instructions on a carefree Saturday morning. So at least I must have a conscience, I surmise.

I’ll be following with interest the emergency meeting this morning of the Retail Council of Canada.

 

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4 thoughts on “Mortified to see where blouse was made

  1. Let’s not jump the gun on buying offshore clothing. What happens to the workers
    if their markets dry up ? This is one horrible incident, catching high profile brands
    who must respond in the public spotlight of media, by looking at the situation in the
    countries they outsource production to. Not sure where the fabrics come from.
    We send a lot of financial aid to that country don’t we ? That should add some muscle
    in imposing safe working conditions if Canada is to be a customer.

  2. Let’s not down load the guilt for a poorly, illegally-built structure in a third-world country on the overseas
    consumer.
    Supplier tenants reported are- UKs Primark, Matalan and Bonmarche, Spain’s store El Corte Ingles –
    and over here in Canada, Ontario Loblaw empire’s ‘Joe Fresh’ clothing line. With the high visibility and
    influence of the Westons sr and even TV ads using Galen jr., something will happen. It’s complicated trying
    to tell another country how to oversee its business sector, which anyone realizes is not up to our standards.
    What we can do is keep the story in the news, follow the solutions being reported and educate ourselves
    on how the international clothing supply chain works and the financial markets
    Let’s not punish the overburdened overseas workers, largely female by refusing to pay for their output…

  3. I guess people over here feel helpless and only see one way to help and that is not to purchase brands whose products are made in sweat shops.
    There needs to be safety standards in place to protect workers. Even if they don’t make much and don’t want to lose what they do make, as a former member of a workplace health and safety committee, the right to refuse unsafe work should be entrenched in all workplaces.

  4. Don’t recall when Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act was first enacted – possibly 1969 –
    nor date the ‘Right to Refuse’ became law. Certainly it was around 30 years ago.
    Getting Bangladeshi governments to enact similar legislation is likely going to take a lot of foreign
    leadership..
    Individuals ‘boycotting’ countries where Canadian companies outsource work in the garment trade
    is tricky – some entrepreneurs over there may be doing their best to modernize. Not that long since
    breakaway Bangladesh was a subject of rock singer aid..
    So looking for brands that don’t get their garments produced in third world countries – are these low-
    marke consumers really willing to pay the prices ? What are the alternative supplier countries ?
    Better to put the heat on the Canadian companies/Brand owners, using this supply chain, to take more
    interest in what’s is going on the ground with their overseas suppliers and their sub-contracts.
    (Picture the US telling us how to run our business and the backlash. Best not to speak too unkindly
    of that far off country about whose issues most of us likely know very little.

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