A Fourth Estate® Service

Monday, January 18, 2021

Marks & Spencer Signs Call to Action to Stop Forced Labor of Uighurs in China

British retail company Marks & Spencer (M&S) formally signed a call to action to end the forced labor of ethnic group Uighurs in the Xinjiang region in China on Jan. 6.

British retail company Marks & Spencer (M&S) formally signed a call to action to end the forced labor of ethnic group Uighurs in the Xinjiang region in China on Jan. 6.

M&S publicly announced that it signed the “Coalition to End Uighur Forced Labor’s Call to Action,” which is supported by over 300 human rights and civil society organizations, as well as labor unions, to end the abuses against the Uighurs.

In a statement, M&S said it signed the call to action “to help drive meaningful change at scale in the Xinjiang region,” which produces about 85% of China’s cotton and about 20% of the world’s cotton.

“At M&S, sourcing ethically and sustainably is core to how we do business and the promise we make to our customers; that’s why we do not source cotton from Xinjiang,” M&S Managing Director Richard Pride said.

“When it comes to sustainable and ethical clothing, we can only achieve real change at scale by working with others,” Price also said.

Anti-Slavery International Chief Executive Jasmine O’Connor welcomed the move and called for other brands to do the same.

A report from Washington-based think thank last December revealed that at least 570,000 people from ethnic minorities in the region had been forced “into cotton-picking operations through the government’s coercive labor training and transfer scheme.”

Reports said that over one million Uighurs are held in concentration camps in the remote northwestern region where human rights violations, including torture, take place.

The Chinese government denied the claims and said that the camps were vocational education and training centers.

Article © 2020 Fourth Estate® — All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recent Articles

Two Supreme Court Judges Shot Dead in Kabul

Two female Supreme Court judges have been shot dead by unknown gunmen on Jan. 17 in the capital of Afghanistan amid peace talks between...

Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Detained After Returning to Russia

Russian police have detained opposition leader Alexei Navalny shortly after landing in Moscow in a flight from Germany where he spent five months recovering...

Small Groups Protest at Statehouses Across the United States

Small numbers of far-right protesters — with some armed with rifles — gathered at heavily fortified statehouses across the United States on Jan. 17,...

Brazil Approves Two COVID-19 Vaccines For Emergency Use

Brazil has authorized its first two COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use, the National Health Surveillance Agency (ANVISA) announced on Jan. 17.Brazil has authorized its...

Dutch Government Resigns over Child Benefits Scandal

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced the resignation of their government over the childcare benefit scandal.Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte announced the resignation of...

Get the Daily NewsBrief in your inbox

Related Stories