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H&M workers protest in Sri Lanka demanding fair employment conditions

While H&M is gearing up for the end-of-the-year shopping season and activists, workers around the globe are joining hands to demand better living wages and fair employment conditions against the Swedish fast-fashion giant.

A recent protest by garment workers in Sri Lanka against working conditions in factories producing H&M garments took place on November 27. Dabindu Collective organized the protest.

Dabindu Collective in Sri Lanka recently organized a protest demanding living wages in H&M supplier factories
Figure: The Dabindu Collective in Sri Lanka recently organized a protest demanding living wages in H&M supplier factories. Image Courtesy: feminisminindia

The protesters asserted that the Hidramani Factory in Vavuniya, Sri Lanka, is failing to provide workers with living wages. The factory produces H&M garments and the protest was one of many against the fast-fashion giant.

The protest was peaceful; however, Dabindu Collective reportedly said that the protesting workers were threatened by the factory management. Global Labor Justice stated in a report earlier this year many factories producing H&M garments saw worker abuse and unacceptable conditions.

H&M lists 235 factories in India amongst its suppliers and the Guardian reported in June that both India and Sri Lanka factories that supply H&M clothing had witness accounts of physical abuse as punishment for not meeting targets. At the time, H&M replied that it would look into the matter.

H&M already started focusing on sustainability in its campaigns. Therefore, workers in India and Sri Lanka hope that this will mean a living wage.

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