End Uyghur Forced Labour Letter by the Coalition Members

March 29th 2021

The Coalition to End Forced Labor in the Uyghur region is a group of organizations, including URAP (Uyghur Rights Advocacy Project) that have joined together to get companies to put human rights before profits by cutting Uyghur forced labor out of their supply chains.

The human rights abuses against Uyghurs and other Turkic peoples in the Uyghur Region being carried out by the Chinese government cannot be overstated, with national governments and legal experts having officially declared that these abuses amount to “genocide.” The world can no longer stand by and go about business as usual.

China Boycott: 

  • The recent commercial retaliation against global brands in China over their statements regarding the use of forced Uyghur labor is a tactic we’ve frequently seen from the Chinese government; using bullying, threats and denial to distract from the unthinkable human rights abuses they are perpetrating.
  • China is threatening financial blowback for fashion brands that have taken a stand for human rights, but we know that billions of consumers around the world want to support companies that align with their values.
  • The companies should be warned: prioritizing market access in China over basic human rights will carry a price. Consumers don’t want to buy clothes built on the back of genocide.
  • Several brands, including VF Corp., Inditex, and PVH, have removed their own policies against forced labor from their websites. These brands’ behavior – like that of the numerous other brands that have remained silent on the issue of Uyghur forced labor– emboldens the Chinese government in its crimes against humanity.
  • Even more reprehensibly, some brands, including MUJI, Hugo Boss, FILA and ASICS, responded to China’s scare tactics by issuing pandering statements that reaffirm their use of Xinjiang cotton. With millions of consumers watching, they chose to embrace complicity in genocide in order to preserve market access.
  • The world’s apparel brands have to choose whether they are going to prioritize appeasing the Chinese government or maintaining their Western consumer base, which is increasingly aware of the Chinese government’s crimes against the Uyghur people.
  • We are calling on these companies to recognize this moment for what it is: a moral test that will be remembered by history. Now is the time to pick a side: will they take a stand against crimes against humanity or will they cave to China’s fear campaign?

 

Headquarter countries of companies that have caved:

INDITEX (Zara, Massimo Dutti +)                             Spain

March 25, 2021: Inditex takes down forced labour statement.

Read more on Quartz & NPR.

PVH (Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger +)                                     U.S.

March 25, 2021: PVH takes down Xinjiang statement.

 

MUJI                                                                                      Japan

March 25, 2021: Promotes use of Xinjiang cotton.

 

HUGO BOSS                                                                       Germany

March 25, 2021: Promotes use of Xinjiang cotton.

 

FILA                                                                                        Italy

March 25, 2021: Promotes use of Xinjiang cotton.

 

ASICS                                                                                   Japan

March 25, 2021: Promotes use of Xinjiang cotton.

 

VF (Northface, Vans +)                                                      U.S.

March 25, 2021: Takes down Xinjiang statement.

March 27, 2021: Uploads a new diluted version of Xinjiang statement.

 

Kelme                                                                         Spain

March 25, 202

End Uyghur Slave Labour by Coalition Members