Responsible clothing production, a shared responsibility

The recently published annual report of the Sustainable Clothing and Textile Covenant shows that a lot still needs to be done before responsible clothing production is achieved worldwide.

The covenant came about as a direct consequence of the drama that took place in 2013 in Bangladesh; when a clothing factory collapsed, more than 1,000 employees were killed. The factory in question supplied clothing to large clothing companies worldwide. In 2016, many of these companies decided to sign the covenant on the road to more responsible clothing production.

Although 78% of the participants in the covenant are “on track”, only 8% of the companies can demonstrate that they fully adhere to the agreements. No less than 14% could not present anything proving good initiatives. It is not clear from the report which companies belong to which percentage.

Since all signatories have made promises regarding the provision of documentation about the discrimination policy, or about the production chain, they are encouraged to think more about these types of issues. Every single year a company is registered, more steps must be taken towards responsible production. By submitting an annual action plan, more and more risks are identified. Risks that will have to be tackled even more in the coming years.