Activism: get your uni to sign the Worker Rights Consortium

Shared Planet Opening Speeches

[Creative Commons: click photo for source]

How do Universities shop for clothes?

Sports kits?

Open Day t-shirts?


Helping to create a more ethical fashion industry involves more than each of us seeing what we can do as individual consumers. Campaigns are going on, petitions can be signed, and there are others ways to make positive difference by working with other people and organisations. One example is People and Planet who have been working for some time to encourage students to make the most of their influence they can have on changing the procurement policies of their universities and colleges. Here’s their vision of the world and what they’re encouraging students to do to help make that a reality:

Our vision is of a world where workers everywhere can unionise, get paid a living wage, work in safety, and live with dignity in gainful employment. We want to ensure that no company can get away with anything less than these standards. No more will companies be able to leave one factory for cheaper labour in another, because a global movement will stop them from doing so. The Worker Rights Consortium is one step towards achieving this. Get your university to join today. The WRC is an independent monitoring organisation that supports workers in the garment industry in defending their workplace rights. In 2009, students in the People & Planet network voted to make campaigning for WRC affiliations a key priority. Students on more than 50 campuses are currently campaigning for their university to affiliate. So far, there are 220 students’ unions, 181 colleges and universities and 2 cities affiliated to the WRC. Click for more

Here’s the list of universities who have joined the WRC. Exeter has not (yet). But the University did respond positively to this ethical procurement campaign by students last year. Food for thought…

Update: the WRC explained

For more, see here

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