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Fab Flash: Gap and New Child Labor Claims

After efforts in recent years to rebrand itself as a more ethical and socially responsible company, Gap is once again being criticized for practicing child labor. Despite launching rigorous social audit systems in 2004 to weed out such practices, the system is still being abused by its subcontractors.

After an article in yesterday's The Observer said children in India as young as 10 were beaten and made to hand-sew clothes, often for no wages, the company has made moves to bar thousands of clothes en route to stores. Gap said it was unaware that the clothes were made by underage workers and has stopped all work from the sweatshop in Delhi so that a full investigation can be conducted.

This newest revelation adds fuel for those campaigning to stop Gap from outsourcing its labor to the developing world, which is increasingly popular for Western fashion chains.


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Sun2242 Sun2242 9 years
I'm going to end up sounding harsh, here. Just going to make some points: Kersalli? Celebrities and models rarely have any say in the look of the photo. Blame the photographer, not Turlington. Though I personally believe the ad is pretty modest. DCStar? It's more likely that the parents are forced to put their children in such labor, rather than them willingly selling their kids. Wealthy business owners or merchants can claim a damage or a generations old debt against the family, and then coerce them into wageless labor in order for that debt to be paid off. If the family is already working countless hours, children are often the last hope. I won't go into the "save the poor countries" part of the comment. Too much time will be wasted on an internet political argument.
demonkitty18 demonkitty18 9 years
neva been a GAP fan but I've always heard news about stores like GAP and Banana Republic being associated with child labour and exploitation. Not surprised.
Lovely_1 Lovely_1 9 years
I have already heard of this matter what, it HAS happened, so I just don't shop there.
laurarose520 laurarose520 9 years
I'm an Old Navy girl when it comes to the Gap family. What I don't get is how really young kids who are being beaten can achieve that quality of hand sewing.
maryam27 maryam27 9 years
I've got an inside source on the topic, and the story is this: Gap Inc makes very explicit agreements with production vendors to have their clothes made. In that agreement a number of things are not allowed, two which are particularly relevant in this instance. 1. Production vendors are not allowed to have minors working in their factories. It violates the agreement. 2. Production vendors are not allowed to hire a third party, or contract out work, to other people. In this instance, this particular factory was outsourcing its work to a factory with child labor. As soon as Gap found out they stopped production and pulled the product to conduct a full investigation. I think that's a responsible business move. On top of acknowledging that this happened, and condemning it, Gap is putting forth the effort and money in order to figure out the responsible parties in this event. Lastly, Gap employs a group of almost 100 people dedicated entirely to investigating business practices within the company and keep tabs on things like this. It's an unfortunate event, but it is a responsible move by the company to put for the the resources and effort to get to the bottom of it. I personally appreciate the Gap Inc brands because I feel like they're high quality, good values, and more often than not are subscribing to responsible business practices.
epicurean_Essy epicurean_Essy 9 years
At least they admitted it this time :oy:
DCStar DCStar 9 years
You know, you people are looking at this issue all wrong. I highly doubt this is the Gap's fault. The children's parents SOLD THEM to the sweatshop! Imagine what else the kids could have been sold into? Sex slaves, drug trafficking, etc. We need to work as a country to get these poor countries to enforce stricter rules with their people, and develop more ethical standards, but until the countries themselves do this, companies like GAP can only do so much. Look at the situation that just happened with Oprah!
swwonder swwonder 9 years
I've always been a little dubious when it comes to Gap, anyhow. the constant celebrity endorsements just seem like a really elaborate cover-up.
kersalli kersalli 9 years
Not to change the subject, but can I just say how much I detest the Christy Turlington ad here? How tacky, that they/she thought it would be appropriate to have her boobs hanging out of her skimpy tank top considering the real issues at hand. I wasn't aware that Project Red was going for sex appeal here...did Christy not get the memo?
UrbanBohemian UrbanBohemian 9 years
That's awful! I grew up with the Gap! I hope Ann Taylor and Banana Republic are in the clear, otherwise I'm doomed :-(
sh0pah0lic56 sh0pah0lic56 9 years
this rlly made me mad because Gap pants r one of the few brands that fit me... i just bought $100's of dollars of clothes from there in the past few weeks! just...sad.... :-( makes me feel guilty
aimeeb aimeeb 9 years
Never been a huge Gap fan...
Masqueraded_Angel Masqueraded_Angel 9 years
Please...they're acting like they didn't know where their clothes were coming from? What kind of bullsh*t is the CEO trying to feed us? Never liked Gap's clothes, although I'll admit I did buy my son a sweater from them once. Never again!
emalove emalove 9 years
I really don't like the Gap I definitely won't go in there!
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