The time has come for legislative action, with binding obligations for companies to trace their supply chains, and to perform due diligence on the respect for workers' rights – in Europe and in the world.
Luc Triangle, General Secretary of industriAll European trade union, welcomed the report, and called for the Commission to swiftly engage in a legislative proposal: "Workers in the garment and footwear industry want their situation to be improved now. Voluntary and non-binding commitments by companies to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) have been tried for decades – and they have failed miserably to deliver, as the Rana Plaza disaster tragically illustrated 4 years ago. The time has come for legislative action, with binding obligations for companies to trace their supply chains, and to perform due diligence on the respect for workers' rights – in Europe and in the world".
Sylvain Lefebvre, Deputy General Secretary of industriAll European trade union, in charge of the Textile, Clothing, Leather & Footwear (TCLF) sector, made clear that the bad working conditions that are too often to be deplored in the sector cannot be allowed to continue: “In Europe and in developing countries, too many workers suffer unacceptable conditions: poverty wages, long working hours , denial of the right to bargain collectively, sexual harassment. Many companies do their best to ensure responsible supply chains, and we congratulate them for this, but this should be the norm, and not the exception. Only binding rules, applying to all, can do the job”.
IndustriAll European Trade Union lent its voice to the open letter to the European Commission signed by 79 trade unions and civil society organisations, calling for transparency in the garment supply chain. Knowing what company, performed which operations on industrial products, at which location, is the pre-requisite for human rights and labour due diligence to be possible.