Press & Media

The garment industry is complex, and there are countless people involved in making any given article of clothing. It can be difficult to unravel just how the industry (and so-called ‘garment supply chains’) work. Before reporting on industry issues, it’s important to understand the nuance behind these problems. We’re here to help you set the record straight.

Media enquiries

Please contact:
Lotte Schuurman or Ellen Keith
+31 (0)20 408 4255
[email protected]

Fair Wear logo

If you would like to use the Fair Wear logo, you can download it here. Please use the following tagline alongside the logo: ‘Fair Wear works to improve labour conditions for garment workers. Together with its partners, Fair Wear takes practical steps and tests new solutions to find a better, fairer way to make clothes.

About us

About Fair Wear Foundation

We are Fair Wear Foundation. Together with garment brands and other industry players, we work on better labour conditions for the people who make our clothes. The men and women working in clothing factories often are employed under dangerous and abusive conditions for poverty wages. That is why we’re pushing towards a new normal, where workers feel safe and respected and receive a salary that is enough to provide for their families. Fair Wear brands show that there is a better way to make clothes, a way that puts the people who make them front and centre. We’re determined to make this the new normal.

Facts & figures

  • We were founded in in 1999 when FNV, a Dutch trade union, and the Clean Clothes Campaign, an advocacy group for garment workers, got together with the goal of improving labour conditions in the garment industry.
  • We are a multistakeholder organisation. Our board is 50% business associations and 50% trade unions and NGOs. We engage these partners at every level, from boardroom decisions to factory audits and training.
  • We work with over 130 member brands (for the most updated number, click here) to improve workers’ lives in garment supply chains.
  • We have over 75 employees across 13 countries
  • We conduct hundreds of factory audits per year
  • Annually, we conduct Brand Performance Checks among all our member companies

Highlights

  • We have complaints helplines for workers in 11 garment producing countries. Workers use these phonelines to safely voice their concerns and complaints, which we then investigate and remediate.
  • We have developed innovative tools like the Labour Minute Calculator to help brands and factories push for  higher workers’ wages.
  • Fair Wear members really change the way they do business, to make things fairer for everyone across the supply chain.
  • Fair Wear members are unusually open about the conditions and complaints received in the factories that produce their garments, and they share this information publicly. This bold measure of accountability is an important step towards a fairer fashion industry.
  • We have created three training modules to raise awareness on workers’ rights on the factory floor.
  • We have trained more than 5,000 factory workers on their labour rights

Multimedia content

Watch our videos on our YouTube channel.

Subscribe to our press list

To receive press releases from Fair Wear, e-mail your name, organisation, and contact details to [email protected] with the words ‘Add to Press List’ in the subject line.

Press releases

‘Covid-19 pandemic is a human rights crisis’ (31 March 2020)

Covid-19: Protecting garment workers has become even more important (23 March 2020)

PeopleFriendlyFashion Pop Up roept op tot bewust koopgedrag (in Dutch, 28 November 2019)

ILO takes historic step against violence in the workplace (21 June 2019)

Fair Wear spokespersons

  • Lotte Schuurman: Lotte is Fair Wear’s press officer. She can help you collect more information on the work of Fair Wear and is your go-to person if you want to conduct an interview with one of the Fair Wear experts.
  • Alexander Kohnstamm: Alexander is the executive director of Fair Wear. Alexander can speak broadly on the challenges and solutions in the garment industry and the role each party plays in creating a fairer industry. He’s experienced in both radio and television interviews.
  • Anne van Lakerveld: Anne is Fair Wear’s living wage expert. She can help you figure out why garment workers are still not being paid enough and what Fair Wear and its members are doing to change that for the better.
  • Biljana Solakovska-Mihajlovksa: Biljana is Fair Wear’s regional coordinator for Eastern Europe. She coordinates all Fair Wear activities and country teams in three production countries.She’s happy to answer any questions you have about the Eastern European garment industry.
  • Koen Oosterom: Koen is Fair Wear’s country manager for Myanmar and Bangladesh. Koen can provide you with an interesting package of topical research results combined with personal stories from the factory floors. He is also one of the founders of the Living Wage Calculator.
  • Margreet Vrieling: Margreet is one of Fair Wear’s associate directors who joined the organisation in 2010 and has substantial knowledge of and experience in the garment industry. As a former trade union representative at the ILO, she knows the ILO Conventions like the back of her hand and she’d be happy to share that with you. Margreet’s focal area is the remediation of worker complaints
  • Suhasini Singh: Suhasini is Fair Wear’s country manager for India. She is very experienced in conflict resolution and in partnering with relevant stakeholders to make a bigger impact.She can tell you many interesting facts about what the garment industry in India looks like.

FAQ

For more questions about Fair Wear, please read our FAQ.

Press coverage

News media

  • The Dutch NOS shared Fair Wear’s call for solidarity during the Covid-19 crisis (11 April 2020)
  • Read the interview that Dutch magazine ViceVersa had with director Alexander Kohnstamm about the impact of Covid-19 in this article (9 April 2020)
  • The German Süddeutsche Zeitung covered Fair Wear’s Covid-19 dossier here (8 April 2020)
  • The New York Times interviewed Fair Wear’s Koen Oosterom on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on garment workers worldwide (31 March 2020)
  • Read here how Fair Wear’s Koen Oosterom explains to Dutch platform De Correspondent how wages can be raised in the garment industry (3 March 2020)
  • Listen to Fair Wear director Alexander Kohnstamm and Fair Wear brand CEO Jaap Schijvens in this interview on improving working conditions in the garment industry on Dutch BNR Nieuwsradio (2 March 2020)

Industry media

  • The German TextilWirtschaft writes about Fair Wear’s Covid-19 dossier in this article on their website (8 April 2020)
  • The German Sport Fachhandel shared Fair Wear’s press release on its website (8 April 2020)
  • Fibre2Fashion shares Fair Wear’s statement on Covid-19 in the garment industry on its website (6 April 2020) The Dutch site Fashion United promotes the Covid-19 dossier on its website (1 April 2020)