BUSINESS AS USUAL IS NOT AN OPTION: SUPPLY CHAINS AND SOURCING AFTER RANA PLAZA

2014

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Rana Plaza was an 8-story complex in Dhaka, Bangladesh that housed five different small garment factories. When it collapsed during the morning rush hour in April 2013, killing more than 1,000 garment workers, the factories were an essential - but invisible - part of the global fast fashion supply chain. This report was a provocative look at the open secret of subcontracting in the supply chain, based on dozens of interviews with workers, factory owners, bankers, apparel companies, and labor activists in Bangladesh throughout 2013. The report drew criticism from companies and U.S.-based labor organizations for focusing too extensively on subcontractors, but further research proved definitely how widespread subcontracting is in fast fashion supply chains, and how risky it is for workers.

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Cover image by Sarah Labowitz