What if today, I told you that doctors are being forced to pick cotton in one of the largest cotton-producing countries on earth and that that cotton is making it's way into the global supply chain for clothing that you might be wearing? Would you be horrified?
People love cotton so much so that 75% of what we wear has some amount of cotton in it. And when many of us think about slavery and cotton, we imagine a bleak time period in American history where African slaves were forced to work the fields of plantations in the deep south for generations.
Uzbekistan is the 6th largest producer of cotton in the world and until 2012, the government forced children as young as 8 into the fields. But international pressures to protect children from slavery worked to some extent, the Uzbek government turned its sites onto doctors.
Actually, not only doctors, but lawyers, and frankly virtually any adult capable of doing so is forced into the fields to harvest cotton. The truth is no one should have to do forced labor.
No one. I mean, who wants to wear slavery? Not me.
Thankfully, there are organizations like AntiSlavery.org who are fighting to end forced labor in cotton production! They are heroes to us at Fed By Threads for their role in bringing ethical justice into fashion.
So what can you do?
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