ASOS, Zara Accused of Using Illegal Syrian Child Refugee Labor
A BBC report discovered that popular apparel brands, like Marks and Spencer, ASOS, Zara, and Mango, are exploiting Syrian child refugees in Turkey to make their clothing.
While Marks and Spencer claims it does not use any refugees in its Turkey supply chain, BBC reported that the brand employed seven Syrian refugees. Those refugees only earned about $1.22 an hour, which is exceedingly low compared to Turkey's minimum wage. The youngest worker was only 15 years old and worked more than 12 hours a day for the company. In response, Marks and Spencer said it has offered permanent legal jobs to those Syrian refugees.
Meanwhile, ASOS said it will supply its refugee employees with financial support.
The BBC also reported that Mango and Zara employed Syrian refugees who were working 12-hour days bleaching jeans. Not only that, but they were not wearing face masks while using the hazardous chemicals. Mango responded to these claims and said the factory was an unauthorized subcontractor.
Critics have said the brands are not doing nearly enough to protect these refugees.