The Seed of Change

Garment Workers Protest in London to Demand Missguided Pay Their Wages.

Possibly for the first time in 20 years, garment workers (with the support of FAB-L) felt empowered enough to protest and demand their wages.
Fashion brand Missguided goes into administration leaving thousands of garment workers with unpaid wages! 5 garment workers from Leicester with FAB-L travel to London to protest outside Teneo Financial Advisory (the administrators) and Alteri Investment Group who have £20 million pounds in the bank after the sale of Missguided to sports retail giant Sports Direct. Picture credits to Holly Falconer.

For far too long, garment workers’ voices have been suppressed. Over the last two decades, thousands of garment workers have been subject to labour abuse, unpaid wages, unsafe work environments, and more!

Due to the lack of services and support available for the garment workers, they had no choice but to accept their predicament.

Garment workers feared even talking openly about these everyday labour abuses.

Hopefully not for too long anymore, as the seed of change and empowerment has been planted!

Prior to FAB-L’s launch, many government and independent agencies reported that garment workers were not willing to speak or report problems, with some helplines receiving just 1 anonymous call in the whole year.

Previously, garment workers hadn’t reported issues because they have been let down too many times with the lack of response and remedies. In some cases, garment workers even lost their jobs because of raising issues.

The garment workers had lost all hope and trust in government-linked agencies.

FAB-L has been changing this! With its service going public on 24th January 2022 and in a very short time, and with the help and support of Trade unions, NGO’s and some Fashion brands, FAB-L has been able to make a tidal difference!

Through engaging two workers from within the community, FAB-L has been able to connect and build trust with the garment workers. FAB-L uniquely assists with welfare rights, legal advice & advocacy services covering immigration, housing, and education, in addition to workplace rights.

FAB-L has already helped garment workers recover over £40,000 of missing wages, and it has helped over 50 workers resolve various housing and welfare issues.

Consequently, the garment workers are willing to walk side by side with FAB-L.

After the rally, the garment workers said “We didn’t know we could do something like this and now we feel enlightened and empowered, and we’re looking forward to the next rally and will attend in bigger numbers!”

They also stated even if they are not able to recover their wages, they now know they can fight!

So, please stay tuned for more developments.

And with special thanks to Labour Behind the Label for organising the rally and to the trade unions (The TUC Midlands, GMB and UNITE) for their advice and guidance.

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