Primark is in the news again for selling cheap clothes from unethical sources. Both the BBC and channel 4 have reported time and time again about the plight of people that enable Primark to sell their clothes cheaply and earn huge profits for themselves
For details of the news items follow these links
A previous story line reported that Primark was sourcing clothes from an Indian factory that use children from refugee camps to embroider tops, sweaters and cardigans. There was an uproar amongst my colleagues and friends, specifically that according to the programme Primark reacted by dropping this particular supplier instead of working with him to ensure that his working practices improve.
One of my colleagues had a differing view from the rest of us, which has got me thinking following the latest storyline. He was of the opinion that these people need jobs and we need cheap clothes and therefore companies like Primark fulfil both our needs and therefore it is a Win Win Win situation. I recall being so appalled by that statement that I was totally lost for words
My questions today are
1. Given the credit crunch and current economic down turn are we seeking cheaper and cheaper clothing and therefore the likes of Primark are merely meeting our demands
2. If that is the case should we then be appalled when we learn how our clothes are produced/sourced or are we being hypocritical in our views
3. Can corporations such as Primark realistically check that their products are from ethical sources?
4. If you are reading this what will you do differently as a result?
I do not buy clothes at Primark for my personal use for several reasons, some of which can that can be found at my other blog Ethnic Supplies but I admit to shopping there once when I wanted cheap clothing to send to African children in the slums of Kampala Uganda.