How to Join
the Fashion Spot / Front Row / Fashion... In Depth
FAQ Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Rules Links Mobile How to Join
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
08-06-2014
  1
V.I.P.
 
BerlinRocks's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: MilkyWay-Pluto-Earth
Gender: homme
Posts: 10,967
New Documentary: The World According to H&M
I've just watched an extraordinary investigation documentary about H&M : The World According to H&M. After I watched it I've said to myself, and my boyfriend : "Ok I'm done with them. It is boycott time, darling."

Here is the link to the video The World according to H&M (it's a French documentary, though, with no sub.)
Here is the summary (Translation by Google ):

Quote:
Admit it, suddenly it wriggles and not a little to the side of your wallet right? Of ours. Fashion and quality at the best price, this is the magic equation hammered red iron Scandinavian brand. 66 years after its birth, the most courted princess of the kingdom of Sweden aligns its 3,000 stores and 15 billion euros in sales in the window of the world. 1.7 billion profit in 2012, what shamelessly parading alongside the stars of the major global financial centers.

Front, a success story immaculate. Glitter prestigious partnerships: creators made in sewing, international organizations and NGOs property in every respect. An ideal son, Karl-Johan Persson, current leader and great-grand-son of the founder, as an emissary of the widow and working with the governments of producing countries. A communication strategy foolproof way steamroller, killing in the bud any false note.

Such as workshops suppliers in smoke in Bangladesh, and with their employees; or unions that go to the front in the European subsidiaries of the group to denounce opaque practices driven from the headquarters in Stockholm.

Because in closets brand is another song that is playing, a relentless and streamlined business logic to the extreme. From one end to the other of the world H & M, we'll take you to discover its secrets hidden beneath the label.

Multiplication of branches, loans and internal circulation through subsidiaries appropriately institutions within our most tax friendly neighbors: in Europe we undress the unsung mounts that allow the brand to increase its profits, while operating quietly generous subsidies from the European Union. We will tell you also how it is trying to muzzle the few voices within it against his brutal methods of management.

Far from the gleaming rays of French shops, we'll let you enter the much less colorful world of 700 suppliers H & M worldwide. In Asia, where nearly 80% of production, but also in Ethiopia, a new Eldorado textile low-cost, we will tell you how the brand, while hiding behind a fierce social-washing, washes of any responsibility outsourcing risks excessive. At the risk of getting into bed, totally irresponsible, with more than doubtful partners.
I also googled "boycott h&m" and realized there are actually protests to boycott h&m, but mostly because they are doing business in Israel........
I mean, ok, good for y'all.

But what about Ethiopia, where the company wants to delocalize from Bangladesh to lower the cost of production even more (no minimum salary exist in Ethiopia, so basically they can pay them $1 a day, or a month....) ?
(in general, Read this about Ethiopia, that is interesting. http://www.nybooks.com/blogs/nyrblog...buse-ethiopia/)

And what about workers' terrible conditions of labor ? I mean a thousand people died last in that building in Bangladesh.... H&M was probably not part of it, but in the documentary we see that some H&M factories over there were built in the same condition, and are already showing damage signs.

What about the fact that H&M actually pay NO taxes in Bangladesh ?

And what about they fire 100 people in France ? What about their new "business plan" so they pay less taxes in France, too ? (France has lost over 180.000.000 Euros in taxes since 2007, because of this....).


I don't understand how well known eco-friendly designers, such as McCartney or Marant, decided to work for this company. Money profit can't explain everything. You have to have a certain ethic, girls ....

*if there is a similar thread, please feel free to move it there. But we can probably think of something more general about what to do to make things change..... #HippiesPleaseUseTheBackdoor

  Reply With Quote
 
08-06-2014
  2
V.I.P.
 
KissMiss's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: London
Gender: homme
Posts: 6,532
Well, I never buy anything from H&M and now I won't even be tempted! Thanks for sharing this!

  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  3
fashion icon
 
isa.b.elle.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Europe
Gender: femme
Posts: 3,493
Many thanks for sharing this sadly I'm not surprised, I never bought anything at HM and I never will... conscious collection my a

__________________
iamtheline
  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  4
tfs star
 
*k.a.t.e*'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: UK
Gender: femme
Posts: 1,872
I'm a buyer for a large retailer in the UK and we manufacture a lot out of Bangladesh, among other countries in the far east.

As questionable as the conditions are in these factories, they are actually giving people a job. The conditions, while bad compared to our standards in the West, are actually often better than the workers living conditions and they are improving all the time with the ETI and other initiatives.

It happened with Nike previously that they were accused of child labour, and consequently shut that particular factory down. Child labour is rarely as black and white as we think of it - the working age of the country was much lower than ours and the children were on apprenticeships but still, 900 people lost their jobs and were forced into working the streets to earn money.

The garment industry is crucial to Bangladesh. As the OP mentioned, we all remember Rana Plaza (H&M weren't in that particular factory) where over 1000 people died in the factory collapse. Some of you may also remember a few weeks later a worked was pulled alive from the wreckage. It's common knowledge in Dhaka that that woman was planted and paid by the government because they needed 'a good news story'.

H&M's exports form 6% of Bangladesh's total GDP. That's a lot of jobs lost.

__________________
Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. (Steve Jobs)
  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  5
trendsetter
 
Melisande's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Paris/Tokyo
Gender: femme
Posts: 1,480
So basically the excuse is that engaging in abuse, slavery and child labor is better than leaving these people to die?

The "providing jobs" story is one that is repeated over and over and over to excuse these practices, it's time we gave it more thought.

k.a.t.e., would you treat your friends and family like this if their lives were in danger? I know you wouldn't.

It is not even remotely a question of depriving them of jobs, the question is to treat them and pay them as the human beings they are...

...as the human beings WE are....


Last edited by Melisande; 08-06-2014 at 08:29 AM.
  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  6
trendsetter
 
VogueDisciple93's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: New York
Gender: homme
Posts: 1,064
I have not shopped at H&M, Zara, Gap, or many other fast retailers in a few years mostly for these reasons. I was working for Gap at the time of the building collapse and fires in Bangladesh and their insensitive reactions were a BIG reason I left the company.

Yes, these companies create jobs where they are needed, but it does not give them the right to treat these people however they please. These are people, people that deserve to be treated as humans no matter their country's fiscal performance. These people work HARD for their (SMALL) wages so they should be treated as valuable assets of the industry - without garment workers this multibillion business is brought crashing to its knees. And these jobs are temporary because these companies do not hesitate to pack up and move to another third world country that affords little regulation and taxes, under the guise of improving the country's economy while risking thousands of lives for low production costs.

There is so much wrong with fast retail that I avoid their stores at all costs. People are worked to the bone as modern slaves to create cheap, poorly constructed garments that consumers discard when they start to deteriorate or the trend has passed. Adding to the ecological waste that begun when the factories dump their hazardous chemicals and dyes into nearby rivers and fields leaving them inhabitable and impossible to cultivate.

Fast retailers are not the only ones guilty of such ethical and ecological shortcomings but they are some of the biggest offenders.

__________________
"Fashion must be the most intoxicating release from the banality of the world." - Diana Freeland
  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  7
tfs star
 
eizhowa's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Norway
Gender: femme
Posts: 1,735
Thanks for sharing, Berlinrocks! I will watch this tonight

When H&M shuts down factories as a response to accusations of slave labor/bad working conditions etc. they are just handling the situation wrong. They won't be helping anyone. They have enough power and money to try to change the factory instead of just ending their dealings with a specific factory. A boycott with the goal to change how H&M deals with the factories shouldn't hurt the workers, but help them. Ending their contract with a factory sounds like an easy way out for H&M...

On the other side, I do think that if the companies are warning the factories that they will leave if the conditions aren't improved, then we can't really blame the companies for leaving when nothing changes. In that case we should blame the factories. However, if the companies are unwilling to pay more for the necessary elevated costs the factories will have, the factories don't really have a choice... So, I guess we would need to know more if we were to decide who is to blame for the situation...

Oh, Darn it, I think I have a H&M gift certificate with 5 usd on it. What to do, what to do...

__________________
Sure. I'm decent.

Last edited by eizhowa; 08-06-2014 at 01:16 PM.
  Reply With Quote
08-06-2014
  8
fashion elite
 
models_vlada's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Santiago
Gender: homme
Posts: 2,602
Quote:
Originally Posted by *k.a.t.e* View Post
The garment industry is crucial to Bangladesh. As the OP mentioned, we all remember Rana Plaza (H&M weren't in that particular factory) where over 1000 people died in the factory collapse. Some of you may also remember a few weeks later a worked was pulled alive from the wreckage. It's common knowledge in Dhaka that that woman was planted and paid by the government because they needed 'a good news story'.

H&M's exports form 6% of Bangladesh's total GDP. That's a lot of jobs lost.
This is true, sad but true. Watching things from another perspective it is good, since it allows us to understand why these things happens, and this is something that not only relates to the fashion industry, but to every single company who actually inititates activities in another country pursuing costs reduction by paying less to it's employees, but if the truth may be said, third world countries get really benefitied with this, since it creates multiple and stable jobs, in countries were unemployment rates are, and the few jobs that exist offer extreme working conditions, by the way, i'm not defending H&M, just saying that every single company pursues that, what needs to be adressed it's how can a company with such high earning profits not pay a little better or offer better working conditions, which it is also quite hard, because watching it from another perspective what's the incentive for H&M to improve the conditions of their workers when the CEOs are working in their offices not watching the reality and totally focused on profit goals.

This is in my opinion a bigger issue that not only affects fashion retailers but most global companies.

__________________
Vlada Roslyakova - Anna Selezneva - Karmen Pedaru - Monika Jagaciak - Kasia Struss
  Reply With Quote
09-06-2014
  9
tfs star
 
*k.a.t.e*'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: UK
Gender: femme
Posts: 1,872
Quote:
Originally Posted by Melisande View Post
So basically the excuse is that engaging in abuse, slavery and child labor is better than leaving these people to die?

The "providing jobs" story is one that is repeated over and over and over to excuse these practices, it's time we gave it more thought.

k.a.t.e., would you treat your friends and family like this if their lives were in danger? I know you wouldn't.

It is not even remotely a question of depriving them of jobs, the question is to treat them and pay them as the human beings they are...

...as the human beings WE are....
I'm not condoning the factory conditions, we'd all love to be able to click our fingers and for their factory conditions to be what we'd expect in the Western world, but unfortunately it's not that simple. They're institutionally based and won't change overnight.

The 'providing jobs' story is used because it's a valid argument. The majority of factories, while they aren't up to our standards, still provide a wage to people who otherwise wouldn't have one. The conditions aren't ideal but the vast majority of factories are a safer place to work when compared to the alternative situation which when you go to these countries you see many people finding themselves in - working the streets doing god knows what or dying because they can't afford food.

__________________
Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. (Steve Jobs)
  Reply With Quote
14-06-2014
  10
Power to the 99%
 
fashionista-ta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hardly ever at Barney's
Gender: femme
Posts: 13,479
Quote:
Originally Posted by isa.b.elle. View Post
Many thanks for sharing this sadly I'm not surprised, I never bought anything at HM and I never will... conscious collection my a

Exactly!!! They're about as conscious as Walmart is green. I have never darkened their door and never will. Fast fashion is not my thing.

__________________
There's a need for more individuality today, and my job is to cater to women, not dictate to them.
--Alber Elbaz
  Reply With Quote
14-06-2014
  11
Power to the 99%
 
fashionista-ta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Hardly ever at Barney's
Gender: femme
Posts: 13,479
Quote:
Originally Posted by *k.a.t.e* View Post
I'm not condoning the factory conditions, we'd all love to be able to click our fingers and for their factory conditions to be what we'd expect in the Western world, but unfortunately it's not that simple. They're institutionally based and won't change overnight.

The 'providing jobs' story is used because it's a valid argument. The majority of factories, while they aren't up to our standards, still provide a wage to people who otherwise wouldn't have one. The conditions aren't ideal but the vast majority of factories are a safer place to work when compared to the alternative situation which when you go to these countries you see many people finding themselves in - working the streets doing god knows what or dying because they can't afford food.

What does 'institutionally based' mean? That everyone there is used to life totally sucking?


Conditions absolutely can change overnight, and all that's needed is someone with the will to make it happen.


Dumping a factory like this when publicity starts up is just as bad as using it in the first place, if the multinational is just shifting to another one like it someplace where they think there is no publicity yet.


There are so many examples of how to do this right--Rugmark, Edun, Maiyet. Rugmark inspects for child labor, and when they find an underage worker, they don't throw them out on the streets, they send them to school, all expenses paid.


It is pure BS to think that these problems are not solvable now. Every one of these factories must have multiple patrons who are fully familiar with proper working conditions, as they themselves have experienced them. What is lacking is the will and moral imperative to implement proper working conditions, and certainly part of the problem is the people who don't question how in the world they could possibly buy an entire new outfit for $25. And another big part of the problem is the thinking that 'Oh well, this is just the way it is.' Everything was the way it was until someone decided it had to change.

__________________
There's a need for more individuality today, and my job is to cater to women, not dictate to them.
--Alber Elbaz

Last edited by fashionista-ta; 14-06-2014 at 10:35 AM.
  Reply With Quote
15-06-2014
  12
Some Like It Hot
 
Chanelcouture09's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: England
Gender: homme
Posts: 9,723
Quote:
Originally Posted by *k.a.t.e* View Post
I'm a buyer for a large retailer in the UK and we manufacture a lot out of Bangladesh, among other countries in the far east.

As questionable as the conditions are in these factories, they are actually giving people a job. The conditions, while bad compared to our standards in the West, are actually often better than the workers living conditions and they are improving all the time with the ETI and other initiatives.

It happened with Nike previously that they were accused of child labour, and consequently shut that particular factory down. Child labour is rarely as black and white as we think of it - the working age of the country was much lower than ours and the children were on apprenticeships but still, 900 people lost their jobs and were forced into working the streets to earn money.

The garment industry is crucial to Bangladesh. As the OP mentioned, we all remember Rana Plaza (H&M weren't in that particular factory) where over 1000 people died in the factory collapse. Some of you may also remember a few weeks later a worked was pulled alive from the wreckage. It's common knowledge in Dhaka that that woman was planted and paid by the government because they needed 'a good news story'.

H&M's exports form 6% of Bangladesh's total GDP. That's a lot of jobs lost.
What you've said there is hitting the nail on the head.

These countries aren't as well developed as ours, they don't have the same laws particularly in relation to human rights as we do in the west.

What consumers need to remember is with the conditions in these places getting improved will cost money so the overall cost of that fast fashion that you're buying from the likes of Primark or H&M won't be as cheap as you like it, it's a double edged sword that with cheap clothing comes some sacrifices because companies won't spend their money to improve something if they aren't getting a return on it, every penny is accounted for.

__________________
A few times in my life I've had moments of clarity where the silence drowns out the noise and I can feel rather than think. - Tom Ford
  Reply With Quote
15-06-2014
  13
Some Like It Hot
 
Chanelcouture09's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: England
Gender: homme
Posts: 9,723
Quote:
Originally Posted by KissMiss View Post
Well, I never buy anything from H&M and now I won't even be tempted! Thanks for sharing this!
I don't either! and refuse to, I'd rather spend a little bit more on one piece that I'll wear a lot than a lot of pieces that are cheap and poorly made. It makes no sense.

__________________
A few times in my life I've had moments of clarity where the silence drowns out the noise and I can feel rather than think. - Tom Ford
  Reply With Quote
15-06-2014
  14
trendsetter
 
inwhiterooms's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Australia
Gender: femme
Posts: 1,241
Sad, but hardly surprising that this happens with mega-big brands.

Hopefully there's a version with English subtitles!

__________________
http://chanelbagsandcigarettedrags.net
Instagram: chanelbagscigarettedrags
  Reply With Quote
18-06-2014
  15
fashion insider
 
educo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: NYC MUTHA F*CKA!!!
Gender: femme
Posts: 2,450
Quote:
Originally Posted by eizhowa View Post
Thanks for sharing, Berlinrocks! I will watch this tonight

When H&M shuts down factories as a response to accusations of slave labor/bad working conditions etc. they are just handling the situation wrong. They won't be helping anyone. They have enough power and money to try to change the factory instead of just ending their dealings with a specific factory. A boycott with the goal to change how H&M deals with the factories shouldn't hurt the workers, but help them. Ending their contract with a factory sounds like an easy way out for H&M...

On the other side, I do think that if the companies are warning the factories that they will leave if the conditions aren't improved, then we can't really blame the companies for leaving when nothing changes. In that case we should blame the factories. However, if the companies are unwilling to pay more for the necessary elevated costs the factories will have, the factories don't really have a choice... So, I guess we would need to know more if we were to decide who is to blame for the situation...

Oh, Darn it, I think I have a H&M gift certificate with 5 usd on it. What to do, what to do...

I used to work on the production side of the business for a large company and factories don't make as much money as you think they do. Certainly not in the billions as H&M has reported. I remember fighting with the factories over PENNIES per garment because the margin was that tight and to be honest, sometimes we lost money on styles.

But telling the factories to improve their conditions doesn't solve the problem. If the conditions are improved, prices WILL go up. If the factories improve with better wages, older workers, etc..where do you think the costs are gonna get passed to? The factory is not going to absorb the cost. We had this problem with one of our factories in China, the middle class was changing and people were actually starting to make real money and no one wanted to work in a damn factory like their relatives did. So those who did, demanded higher wages. When the factory came back to us, we had to scramble to find another factory that could produce at the price we wanted to pay. Where did we go? Indonesia. Even then, we lost money, but it was a lot less than what we were to lose by continuing to produce in China.

I used to work for a Nike subsidiary who's main retail outlet was Walmart. You wouldn't believe the prices I was forcing down their throats to match. All because it had to be offered at $9.99.

The answer truly lies with the consumer. If the consumer stops buying cheap sh*t, the company stops making it. If the company stops making it, the factories have to keep up in order to stay in business. That's how it works. No amount of regulations or whatever on a factory will work because there will be one company (ahem, WALMART) that will overstep those regulations. They WILL find another factory, and going by how much we were producing for Walmart on this single brand, a factory is gonna make sure they keep that business. No one is gonna step up to big producers like Walmart, Nike, or H&M because they'll grease anyone they need to in order to continue producing items on their terms.

  Reply With Quote
Reply
Previous Thread | Next Thread »

Tags
boycott, documentary, handm, world
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

monitoring_string = "058526dd2635cb6818386bfd373b82a4"


 
All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:52 PM.
Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
TheFashionSpot.com is a property of TotallyHer Media, LLC, an Evolve Media LLC company. ©2014 All rights reserved.