Organic Consumers Association

Campaigning for health, justice, sustainability, peace, and democracy
Care What You Wear

ABOUT THE CAMPAIGN

Care What You Wear!

Campaigning for Ecological & Ethical Clothing 
 
Every time you buy a new article of clothing your purchase has a ripple effect on the environment. The global apparel industry is the second-largest industrial polluter. From the growing of GMO cotton, to the production of wool and synthetic fibers, to the dyes used on those fibers, to the factories where clothes are assembled—each step of the way, soil is degraded, water is polluted, laborers are exploited. Can consumers help drive the fashion industry away from this toxic model, toward a more ethical, regenerative model? Yes, if we buy wisely.

The $3 trillion-dollar global clothing industry’s profits are built on degenerative agricultural practices, exploitative labor practices and relentless, pervasive advertising campaigns that make consumers feel inferior if they don’t wear the latest style.

The  “Care What You Wear” campaign’s aim is to educate consumers about why and how to buy clothes that support organic and regenerative farming, responsible production and fair labor practices, and to expose today’s fast-fashion industry which perpetuates ethically and environmentally unsound practices with its “buy more, cheaper clothes” message.

We can’t fix the global clothing industry’s complicated and “dirty” supply chain overnight. But by putting pressure on the worst offenders, and by supporting the brands that takes steps to clean up their supply chain, together, we can move the dial in the right direction.

RECOMMENDED BOOKS

  • Threads
    Americans have been shocked by media reports of the dismal working conditions in factories that make clothing for U.S. companies. But while well intentioned, many of these reports about child labor and sweatshop practices rely on stereotypes of how Third World factories operate, ignoring the complex economic dynamics driving the global apparel industry. Putting a human face on globalization, Threads shows not only how international trade affects local communities but also how workers can organize in this new environment to more effectively demand better treatment from their distant corporate employers.
  • Making Sweatshops
    The only comprehensive historical analysis of the globalization of the U.S. apparel industry, this book focuses on the reemergence of sweatshops in the United States and the growth of new ones abroad. Making Sweatshops asks whether the process of globalization can be promoted in ways that blend industrialization and economic development in both poor and rich countries with concerns for social and economic justice—especially for the women who toil in the industry's low-wage sites around the world.

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