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"This is what a feminist looks like" t-shirt

(5 Posts)
Garlick Thu 12-Nov-15 18:44:16

I thought this might have been mentioned, but can't see it here.
www.trueactivist.com/ultimate-irony-these-women-make-70-feminist-t-shirts-for-less-than-1-an-hour

The reporter says women in the Mauritian sweatshop sleep in dormitories of 16 and are on four-year contracts that mean they don’t get to see their families in that time. They earn £120 a month.

Whistles sells "This is what a feminist looks like" shirts for £45 – a figure it would take the women a week and a half to earn. They're sold in conjunction with the Fawcett Society - whose response was admirable, but strongly suggests they're not doing due diligence on the products they support.

VestalVirgin Thu 12-Nov-15 18:47:23

Indeed. We should be very wary of anyone who makes money with feminism.

Garlick Thu 12-Nov-15 23:59:06

I'd jolly well like lots of people to make lots of money with feminism! Money has no loyalties, and it speaks loud & clear.

Making it by exploiting women kind of defeats the object, though.

VestalVirgin Fri 13-Nov-15 00:06:40

That's the thing, Garlick. Once making money is someone's primary goal, exploitation of women is almost certain to be involved.
I would only ever buy t-shirts with feminist slogans from self-employed women or from small companies whose primary goal is to advance feminism. (Like, that "Who made your pants" thing - they have principles)

It's the same with fairtrade and organic farming, nowadays - many big businesses try to get a slice of the cake by putting some fake or cheap label on their stuff. I stick to small, established brands that only ever sold organic food or fairtrade stuff.

Garlick Fri 13-Nov-15 00:39:30

You're right, it's a minefield. And, by making the kind of choices you describe, you're making constructive contributions to a very broad sweep of desirable objectives smile

If I thought it was impossible to make money by being feminist, though, I'd have given up the ghost years ago! It's just that the people who source, negotiate and mediate products need to be thinking more carefully; asking harder questions. If the Fawcett Society's excitement at raising awareness and revenues blinded them to supply-chain exploitation, then they made a very bad mistake and should make sure they repair it.

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