FWF has published the Living Wage Engineering report. FWF director Erica van Doorn handed out the first copy to Mark Held of the European Outdoor Group.
At FWF, we see that in general, stable business relationships between garment brands and factories contribute to better labour conditions. This is especially true for the ‘Living Wage’ standard. In partnership with the European Outdoor Group, this report explores ways in which these stable business relationships can provide a context for what we propose to call ‘Living Wage Engineering’.
Most of us think of the garment industry in terms of what is often called ‘fast fashion’ and the business practices that accompany it, including: (sub)seasonal collections driven by everchanging trends, short lead times, long supplier lists, limited supplier leverage, non-committal buyer-supplier relationships, and severe price competition.
Often, such factors and practices create a less than stable business environment, making it difficult to achieve lasting changes in workplace conditions.
The outdoor industry tends to be less prone to such highly fluid business practices. In the context of seeking solutions on living wages, this tendency makes the outdoor industry an interesting and instructive context in which to investigate, and eventually experiment with, the challenging issue of living wages.