Ethics of the Textile Industry BY alliterate The textile industry faces many ethical issues; unfortunately the outworking industry is a growing problem in the fashion world which often goes unheard of. While outworkers are facing poverty, Australian teenage fashion consumers are oblivious to this extreme ethical issue. Young people should be addressing the outworking industry in Australia in an attempt to improve the current and future economical and ethical situations.
This essay will investigate the working conditions of outworkers, the amount of knowledge young Australians have about outworkers, the effect of the outworking industry on the wider community and will provide recommendations on how young Australian consumers can improve the situation in the outworking industry. Outworkers live in disgusting, unhygienic living conditions because of their incredibly low income, while Australian teenagers are oblivious to this and the story of the person behind the machine who has made their clothing.
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A sweatshop is a manufacturing facility where workers endure poor working conditions, long hours, low wages and other violations of labor rights (Sofas, 2012). Sportswear brand Nikkei illegally forced people in Vietnam to work 65 hours per week, or 1 Scents per hour, Nikkei publicly denies violating the legal minimum wage of $45 per month, but their own secret studies prove otherwise, as do pay stubs. Nine’s Dartmouth study naively trusts factory managers instead of examining pay stubs (Loran, E, 2012).
A survey conducted at Carmela College Deodorants revealed that students were shocked about the low wage of outworkers; while 2 out of 3 teenagers were concerned about outworkers (Refer to Appendix A) 3 out of 3 teenagers would still buy products from Nikkei knowing the poor income outworkers receive. It is possible that Australian teenagers do not realized how lucky they are, immigrants Katherine and Tina Train have been outworkers since they were ten, at the moment they go to school during the day and spend all night sewing clothes for the Victorian fashion industry, they are paid as little as $0. 0 per garment that takes 20 minutes to construct, these girls have to work twice as hard to get what every other stereotypical Australian teenager receives. The Train sister’s story is only one of a million teenage outworker’s stories that can go unheard, teenagers should be more considerate and pay attention to where their clothing items are coming from as this information can eave a large impact on the wider community(Walker, K. 2011).
While the outworking business within Australia has been able to provide people with Jobs, these Jobs are not stable and the wider community is concerned with the possible economical and ethical implications. Outworkers in south eastern Melbourne, Brunswick and surrounding areas in inner northern Melbourne are very skeptical as to how the new legislation ‘ the bill’ law can protect them, especially when it comes to a standard pay rate, these workers are scared if the law interferes their wage may even be decreased to a lower income (Outworkers Speak Out, 2012).
If the law was to make manufactures increase the wage given to outworkers this could cause the problem of manufactures going overseas to find cheaper outworkers and possibly causing the 800, 000 Australian outworkers to face unemployment. People outside of the outworking industry have shown their concern, Mr. Eng, president of Springtail Asian a lot of pressure. He believes that the industry should be protected and fashion houses should be more accountable for their costing. Most outworkers fear that the introduction of new law may affect their lives.
Sewing has been their only Job for cost of them, they do not feel pressured however, all they ask for is protection and to be treated like any other working Australian citizen (Outworkers Speak Out, 2012). Teenagers are involved in this issue because all the consumers surveyed at Carmela College Deodorants stated that, they would not investigate the outworking industry and try to help improve the current situation because they did not believe that outworkers will ever be treated fairly (refer to appendix C) because they are taken advantage of.
If these attitudes change to wanting to help outworkers in Australia ND teenage consumers did investigate the issues then Australian outworkers could be able to receive the protection they desperately need and want. The youth of the Australian society have so much unused potential that could have such a monumental effect on the lives of the misfortune, the outworkers, there are many things teenager consumers can do to improve the outworking industry.
First off, teenagers should be taking action, example, writing letters to Coo’s of companies such as Puma and Nikkei and tell them workers should receive fair wages and decent conditions at work. Also stand up for the rights of outworkers, protest and make editions so the government can provide equality and protection for outworkers in Australia. And finally buy sweatshop free clothing, if clothing carries the ACE (Ethical Clothing Australia) label the item has been manufactured in Australia and all workers have received legal pay, list of ACE Brands is listed in Appendix D.
These recommendations can help not only the protection of Australian workers but it could also help the workers in Vietnam working for Nikkei and other underpaying manufacturers. Outworking wages and living conditions are unimaginable, the workers in Australia have a large effect on the wider community and deserve to be rated correctly and teenagers are unaware of this because of the society they live in and are too caught up in their own worlds. Young people should be addressing the outworking industry in Australia in an attempt to improve the current and future economical and ethical situations.