Collaboration and alignment are both key ingredients for enacting meaningful change. That is why Fair Wear has steadily been building a strong network of partners and collaborators.
We are continuously setting ambitious goals and we can’t achieve them alone. It is our role to act as a convenor, proactively initiating and participating in partnerships to boost industry alignment and share knowledge.
The more we partner with industry actors like political bodies, business associations, trade unions, and civil society organisations the quicker we can build critical mass in the industry.
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.
Sustainable Textile Initiative: Together for Change (STITCH)
In 2021, we teamed up with five other organisations and embarked on a new, extensive five-year partnership: Sustainable Textile Initiative: Together for Change (STITCH). It 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. We have worked hard to ensure that the goals and activities of STITCH perfectly align with those of Fair Wear. As a result,all Fair Wear work contributes to STITCH’s goals.
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. Teaming up with such varied and impactful partners allows us to complement each other’s work and focus our efforts where we can truly add value. Between us, we have access to all the key value chain stakeholders, from trade unions and labour rights organisations to suppliers, employers’ associations, brands and local governments.
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. We envisage 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.
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs has provided the financial support for the programme and is aligned as a strategic partner for STITCH.
The Strategic Partnership for Garment Supply Chain Transformation (2016-2020
The Strategic Partnership for Garment Supply Chain Transformation was a multi-stakeholder partnership that concluded in 2020. It was established between Fair Wear, CNV Internationaal, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Mondiaal FNV. The partnership facilitated evidence-based dialogue between civil society, government and business on topics such as Living Wage, Gender-based violence and Social Dialogue. STITCH builds on the solid foundation this Strategic Partnership laid.
European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI) on Living Wages in the garment, footwear and textile sector
An ECI is a tool which compels the European Commission to consider action on an issue, as long as it has the support of at least one million EU citizens.
As part of this, we are proposing a package of measures to the European Commission ncluding sector specific due diligence on living wages, and an EU trade mechanism at the border to the single market.. We are calling for legislation that would require EU-based garment, textile and footwear brands (and brands selling products on the EU market) to act on living wages throughout their global supply chain including sector-specific due diligence on living wages, as well as an EU trade mechanism at the border to the single market.
The Industry We Want (TIWW)
TIWW is a partnership between three like-minded MSIs: Fair Wear, ETI and SAC, working together to connect key actors across the value chain — brands, suppliers, business associations, workers and trade unions, civil society, governments, NGOs, MSIs, and experts — to create a new normal in the garment industry.
TIWW envisages an industry that realises its full potential to ensure dignity for workers in decent jobs, thriving businesses along the supply chain and a positive impact on the planet.
TIWW collects and disseminates examples of successful and scalable solutions to amplify their reach and effectiveness. The partnership uses its unique positioning connect knowledgeable, passionate and impact-focused stakeholders to measure progress, enhance collaboration, drive change, inform policy and hold ourselves accountable. The focus is always on the inclusive processes emphasising the interconnectedness of environmental, social and commercial practices to accelerate transformation.
The Common Framework for Responsible Purchasing Practices (CFRPP)
Companies taking action to make progress in the area of responsible purchasing practices have requested clarity on what constitutes ‘responsible purchasing practices’ and support towards implementing these practices. On initiative of Fair Wear and ETI, likeminded Multistakeholder Initiatives (MSIs) including the German Partnership for Sustainable Textiles (PST), the Dutch Agreement for Sustainable Garments (AGT) and Ethical Trade Norway, with input from ACT (Action Collaboration Transformation), Amfori, Better Buying Institute, Better Work, Fair Labor Association (FLA) and the Sustainable Terms of Trade Initiative (STTI), developed the Common Framework for Responsible Purchasing Practices. The framework aims to provide a reference point and a common language for MSIs, brands and policy makers on what constitutes responsible purchasing practices. More information and developments on the framework can be found here.
Asia Garment Hub
Fair Wear is a member of the Asia Garment Hub, a digital platform and collaborative online community tailored to the garment and textiles sector in Asia, viewed through a lens of Decent Work and Sustainability. The purpose of the Hub is to connect stakeholders and showcase knowledge in one place.
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