About Fashion Offsetting
Why we think this is the way to create real impact
50 ct: They represent the average price increase for lifestyle products (such as fashion items) if living wages were paid. With FairBuy, you can donate 50 ct for every lifestyle item purchase. They are forwarded untouched to projects for the (garment) workers.
THE BRANDS' STATEMENTS/PLEDGES
The brands cannot simply set higher wages because of the long and complex supply chain.
But they can pledge their commitment to pay higher wages.
This strengthens unions in collective bargaining processes - or enables governments to raise the minimum wages (without having to fear the brands would move on to even cheaper countries in that case).
Some brands have tested this approach in Cambodia last year. They have made an official pledge for fair negotiations and higher wages preceding the wage negotiations. The minimum wage was raised by 28% and lies now above the poverty line.
This is just the start.
(meaning the whole lifestyle products industry)
Our goal is to encourage more brands to join these pledges and to extend them to other countries.
This is what your statements do.
OVERVIEW ABOUT THE IMPACT LOGIC
- STEP BY STEP
INTRODUCING FASHION OFFSETTING
FairBuy is a smartphone application (app) for fashion offsetting (or rather for the offsetting of production conditions of lifestyle products).
Fashion offsetting is a concept to improve workers' conditions immediately but also to initiate long-term change in the industry.
The idea behind FairBuy is simple: It should be our decision to pay living wages to the people who make our products.
WE are the customers. WE are the ones who pay.
By showing what we want, we can make it a reality.
Read more about the idea and its origins, as well as about the approach and by whom it is shared (and what it has reached already) below.
We start with explaining the impact logic.
Knowing that 50 cents per item are the average difference between current and living wages, buyers of lifestyle products wouldn’t mind paying these.
The market cannot fulfill this wish, which is why we call the industry “broken”.
The reason for that lies in the process of indirect sourcing (supply chains too long and complex for brands & retailers to simply set higher wages).
Two possible solutions to fix this would be a) for brands & retailers to establish long-term relations to all suppliers and b) for governments or industries to raise the minimum wages. The first has already started, but the process is long and can only be slow. The second requires for brands & retailers to give binding pledges to higher wages, so these can be raised without the fear that the companies move on to cheaper countries.
This approach has been tested successfully by a few pioneer brands in one country - let's use our statements to encourage more brands to join and all to extend these pledges to more countries!
To encourage the brands & retailers to give these pledges (or, as we call them, statements), we as their customers must give our statements, too, that we want that – and that we ARE indeed WILLING to pay this tiny price difference.
We do this by starting to pay them NOW, because by forwarding the money, we add credibility to our statements.
With FairBuy, we can offset the production conditions of our garments by donating 50 cents per item and making the statements.
These donations are forwarded untouched to institutions /projects which take care of the garment workers’ problems. These are selected by impact and urgency. The money collected currently will go to the Rana Plaza compensation fund, which takes care of workers who cannot work anymore due to injuries - and to surviving dependents of those who died. Next projects will be about informing workers about their rights and creating touchpoints for them in case they feel these rights are violated.