United Kingdom: Boohoo could face US export ban over ‘slave labour’ allegations, according to reports

Fashion firm Boohoo and some of its suppliers – including those in Leicester – could be banned from exporting goods to the United States due to allegations over the use of slave labour.

US Customs and Border Protection believes it has grounds to launch an investigation into the company’s practices following a campaign by an organisation called Liberty Shared, which fights modern-day slavery,

Duncan Jepson, who runs the campaign, said Boohoo is not doing enough to stop the use of forced labour in the Leicester factories which make many of its clothes, Sky New reports today.

Mr Jepson told the broadcaster: “The evidence of Boohoo and forced labour is quite compelling.

“I think it will be a wake-up call for British institutions about how they’re handling modern slavery enforced labour, particularly in a community like Leicester East.

“What we’d all like, those of us interested in improving labour conditions is for Boohoo to really get to grips with the governance of their supply chain to ensure there is no wage theft and people have proper contracts.

“It must look at all 11 indicators the International Labour Organisation sets out for forced labour and see there is compliance with those.”

Last year Boohoo’s sales in the US were £263.6m, more than a fifth of the company’s total revenue, according to Sky.

The UK’s former anti-slavery commissioner Kevin Hyland told Sky: “If they do identify this in the supply chain in Leicestershire, the potential sanctions to not trade in the US are enormous.

“The aim of the petitions is very clear, that companies which think they can benefit from forced labour and the exploitation of others are shown that they cannot and will face a sanction that they can’t trade in the world’s largest economy.

The original full article can be found at leicestermercury.co.uk

(Photo: AFP)

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