Why I’ll never buy River Island again. Fair trade ratings on your fave UK labels!

Wow. Most of the Labour Behind the Label report is a bit of an eye opener. Check these ratings out…

Grading from 0-5 on these companies implementing or recognising the living wage

  • Hobbs: 0
  • Jane Norman: 0
  • Limited Brands: 0 (La Senza, Pink, Victoria’s Secret)
  • Paul Smith: 0
  • The Peacock Group: 0 (Peacocks, Bon Marche)
  • Reiss: 0
  • Republic: 0
  • Supergroup: 0 (Superdry, Cult)
  • Whitestuff: 0
  • River Island: 1
  • Debenhams: 1
  • Fat Face: 1
  • French Connection: 1
  • Gap: 1
  • H&M: 1
  • Levi Srauss & Co: 1
  • Burberry: 2
  • Matalan: 2
  • J Sainsbury: 2
  • Tesco: 2
  • Arcadia Group: 2.5 (Burton, Dorothy Perkins, Evans, Miss Selfridge, Topman, Topshop, Wallis and, operationally, BHS)
  • Aurora Fashions: 2.5 (Coast, Oasis, Warehouse)
  • Asda George: 3
  • New Look: 3
  • Primark: 3
  • Inditex: 3.5 (Zara, Massimo Dutti, Pull & Bear, Bershka)
  • Monsoon: 3.5
  • Marks&Spencer: 3.5
  • Next: 3.5

“Over the last decade consumers of UK high street fashion have become increasingly aware that their fashion comes at a price: low pay and poor conditions for millions of workers around the world.” (Labour behind the label)

The majority of the brands I’ve bought on www.asos.com are doing nothing to implement a living wage or recognise the Asia Floor Wage. Suddenly I like those River Island boots I bought on asos.com a whole lot less…

*Living wage definition: Where the earnings from a standard working week before overtime are sufficient to meet the basic needs of a worker and her family (4 people), and to provide some discretionary income. Distinguished from both the minimum wage and prevailing industry wage.


Grade 0: Does not accept the principle of a living wage.
Grade 1: Accepts the principle of a living wage, but applies legal minimum/industry benchmark.
Grade 2: Acknowledges that minimum and industry benchmark wages are not sufficient standards, but no real efforts to apply living wage.
Grade 2.5: Can offer concrete examples of steps to increase wages in the supplier base, but pilot projects are limited in scope and have significant omissions.
Grade 3.0: Can offer concrete examples of steps to increase wages in the supplier base, but there are either significant omissions or there is no clear plan to move beyond pilot projects.
Grade 3.5: Can offer concrete examples of steps to develop and implement a living wage methodology in the supplier base, with clear plans to move beyond pilot projects.
Grade 4: Sophisticated and serious engagement with a living wage, beginning to move beyond pilot programmes, but still not systematic across supplier base.
Grade 5: Sustained implementation of an effective living wage policy across entire supply base.

(source: http://www.labourbehindthelabel.org/letscleanupfashion)

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