"Cotton crimes campaign stop #H_and_M
being complicit in #Cotton_Crimes
This year, yet again, hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children in #Uzbekistan
were forced to work harvesting cotton. Activists who spoke out were arbitrarily detained and threatened. This modern-day #slavery
is no secret to clothing retailers, and many have signed a pledge to refuse to buy cotton made in Uzbekistan as a result.
Despite pledging to not to source Uzbek cotton, the global retailer H&M is refusing to take steps that would guarantee no companies in its supply chain profit from slavery in Uzbekistan. Even worse, H&M reportedly had business links with International, a company that explicitly deals in cotton from Uzbekistan.
Whilst forced labour is used to grow and harvest cotton in many countries, Uzbekistan is the only country where it is the government that organises and benefits from this practice. Schools are often closed during plantings and harvests so children can be forced into the fields. Adults are told that if they do not participate in the harvest they risk losing their jobs. The government reportedly earns around US$1 billion from revenue from the sale of cotton. None of the profits are returned to farmers or local communities. Those forced into the field receive little, if any, pay."