Our partners

Fair Wear is part of a bigger movement—starting with our growing network of partners.

Transforming working conditions for people in the garment industry is an ambitious goal, and we can’t achieve it alone. That’s why we partner with political bodies, business associations, trade unions, and civil society organisations to help move the industry forward. This includes strategic collaboration with decision-makers and key actors working at important junctures in the garment industry.

We advance the successes of our member brands to reach many more brands in the industry by partnering with like-minded organisations and initiatives. For example the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile the German Partnership for Sustainable Textiles, the Ethical Trading Initiative, ASN Bank and the International Labour Organisation, among others. These organisations have access to the biggest brands in the world and we’re happy to inspire them by sharing what we’ve learned.

We also lobby policymakers and advocate for the rights of garment workers both internationally and on a regional level across garment production countries. In Bangladesh, for example, we submitted a draft law on the ‘Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace’, together with local partners of Dutch trade union Mondiaal FNV.

At Fair Wear, we are uniquely positioned to be both visionary and pragmatic. Our board, which is made up of a mix of business associations, trade unions and NGOs, brings together ideas and perspectives from across the industry, while our hands-on approach and our member brands keep us close to the heart of supply chains and the reality of factory working conditions. Bringing together this powerful web of stakeholders is what’s required to transform the industry. Together, we’re making fair fashion the norm.

Sustainable Textile Initiative: Together for Change (STITCH)

Sustainable Textile Initiative: Together for Change (STITCH) is a partnership with a common vision: a global textile and garment industry that contributes to an equal and just society by respecting human rights in the world of work.

STITCH consists of 6 partners: Fair Wear, two labour rights organisations — CDI in Vietnam and Cividep in India; two Dutch unions — CNV Internationaal and Mondiaal FNV; and another multi-stakeholder initiative — Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) in the UK.

The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs has provided the financial support for the programme and is aligned as strategic partner for STITCH.

STITCH shares the goal of an industry where garment workers, of which 75% are women, can exercise their right to freedom of association, and access safe, dignified and properly paid work.

STITCH envisages workplaces where workers feel free to speak out, unionise, and bargain collectively for better working conditions. The partnership will amplify workers’ voices, help achieve trade union and civil society objectives and drive global change by convening and aligning national and international supply chain stakeholders.

By strengthening unions, we can enhance workers’ influence in the value chain. By influencing brands – the most powerful players in the value chain – we can create space for workers to organise and secure a seat at the negotiation table. By improving brands’ purchasing practices, we can create the potential for better working conditions and rewarding freedom of association at the supplier and factory level. By influencing market country governments and strengthening the international regulatory frameworks for human and workers’ rights, we can build an ecosystem that supports it all. 

Between us, we have access to all the key value chain stakeholders and actors, from trade unions and labour rights organisations, to suppliers, employers’ associations, brands and local governments.

The Strategic Partnership for Garment Supply Chain Transformation 2016-2020

This clip was played at the opening of our Pop Up for #PeopleFriendlyFashion. It highlights the work of the Strategic Partnership, highlighting the garment worker at its core.

This multi-stakeholder partnership concluded in 2020. It was established between Fair Wear, CNV Internationaal, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Mondiaal FNV. The partnership brought together the expertise of trade unions, NGOs, and ethical brands and factories that address three key labour issues:

  • Living wage
  • Gender-based violence
  • Social dialogue

Together, new ideas were tested to provide models and evidence to brands, factories, trade unions, governments and civil society organisations of how a fairer garment industry could benefit business and workers. With real examples from garment supply chains, the Partnership aimed to create practical solutions that the rest of the industry can use and replicate. An example is a recent joint effort between unions, brands and factories to raise wages in garment factories.

At its core, the Partnership strived to create opportunities for evidence-based dialogue between civil society, government and business, because this is the only way to move the garment industry forward.

Fair Wear Associate Director Margreet Vrieling discusses the importance of the Strategic Partnership for Garment Supply Chain Transformation.