Slow Fashion Season is upon us; a three-month campaign organised by Netherlands-based non-profit organisation CollAction where thousands of style lovers across the world take a stand against the fast fashion industry by making conscious choices. This year the campaign runs from June 21 to September 21.
The aim is to raise awareness of the social and environmental impacts of the fashion industry and educate consumers on the role they play in shaping and influencing the industry.
The slow fashion campaign also aims to inspire participants to make better fashion choices that have positive impacts, such as avoiding retail purchases from fast fashion brands, buying second-hand and vintage, wearing the clothing they already own, upcycling, swapping, learning to DIY or supporting sustainable, local and independent fashion labels (particularly those that may be financially struggling as a result COVID-19).
Why tackle the fashion industry?
The fashion industry is one of the most-polluting industries in the world, with 8,000 synthetic chemicals used, 79 billion cubic meters of water consumed (enough to fill 32 million Olympic-size swimming pools) and 87% of clothing fibres either landfilled or incinerated costing $100 billion annually.
Fashion is also one of the world’s most exploitative industries, with over 50% of garment workers in countries such as India and Philippines not paid a legal minimum wage and 87% of women in Pakistan paid less than the minimum wage. According to the Fairtrade Foundation, the 300 million people who produce cotton are still living in poverty. Oxfam found that just 4% of the price of the garment goes to the women who make them.
Garment and textile workers have also been hardest hit by the pandemic crisis, with a new report by The Center for Global Workers Rights finding that one million Bangladesh garment workers have been fired or temporarily suspended from work due to cancelled orders or businesses not paying up; 72.4% have been sent home without pay and 80.4% of dismissed workers were sent home without severance pay.
CollAction hopes that Slow Fashion Season will transform the fashion industry by effecting change through consumption. According to the organisation, if 25,000 people participate in Slow Fashion Season, it will save up to 750 million liters of water and 2.5 million kilograms of carbon emissions.
Last year 14,487 people joined the movement and this year their aim is to reach 25,000 people. So far, 7,523 people have signed up (at the time of writing).
There’s still time to join the movement. You can sign up at slowfashionseason.org.
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All images via collaction.org.