Natasha Porreca, a senior at Chapman University founded a club, Fair Wear, at Chapman University that speaks out against injustice and unethical practices in the clothing industry.
At the suggestion of a fellow Internet Communications classmate, I interviewed Natasha for the blog and urge you all to not only avoid shopping at companies such as Forever 21, that use sweatshops, but also to become active and speak out against this issue! An easy and fun way to do this would be to support Fair Wear. They meet every other Wednesday at 6:00 p.m. in the Panther Pad.
My interview with Natasha:
Why did you and the president start the club?
Because we are really interested in the anti-sweatshop movement and raising awareness about unjust labor practices that occur in the apparel industry.
How many members does the club currently have?
We have a small steering committee that meets to discuss plans and a larger group that meets to support our causes and events.
What initiatives has Fair Wear been working on this semester?
We held a fundraiser for Haiti, and also teamed up with PIKE to raise money at their White Out party int he beginning of Spring semester. We ended up raising about $600 for the American Red Cross to give to Haiti. We’re planning on screening a documentary that we created and edited, describing the problems with sweatshop labor and what students have done in the past to help, in about three weeks. We are also a part of the Social Justice Council, which coordinated Diversity and Equity Week and the Tunnel of Oppression, which will be on Tuesday.
What are the future plans for Fair Wear?
We’re hoping to make Chapman be a member of the Workers’ Rights Consortium which will ensure that all of our apparel sold on campus is made through fair labor.
Are there any local organizations or non-profits that Fair Wear has or is planning on partnering with
We are a member of the United Students Against Sweatshops, which is a national organization dedicated to educating students about how they can help stop sweatshop labor. We have also been in communication with the Orange County Human Trafficking Task Force to see what we can do to help with their cause.
Once again, I highly recommend that everyone attends a meeting and checks out this club! Being an educated consumer is important and Fair Wear can provide you with a vast amount of information regarding the use of sweatshops in the fashion industry.