6 December 2012

Africa: Time for Brands to Walk the Walk

press release

There is a sad irony in the fact that companies like Levi's, who say they are devoted to making us feel good about our appearance, are in fact leaving behind an ugly toxic trail in the places where their clothes are manufactured.

Levi's isn't alone in driving the toxic fashion trend; other brands that have recently been using suppliers in the same area of Mexico are Guess, Tommy Hilfiger, Express, Calvin Klein, Paris Blues and American Eagle Outfitters.

Many of these other brands make similar positive statements about their dedication to respecting the environment. Now they have a chance to put their money where their mouth is. Global brands like Levi's have the power and influence to play a positive role in the industry in Mexico.

Around the world, more and more consumers, activists and fashionistas are uniting behind the idea that the clothes we buy should carry a story we can be proud of, not the residues of hazardous chemicals.

In South Africa, several musical celebrities have come together to join Greenpeace in our international Detox campaign urging the fashion industry to detox its clothing lines.

Lu Dlamini, Madala Kunene, Sazi Dlamini, Pinkie Mtchali, Poppy Seed, Nibs Van Der Spy, Guy Buttery, Andy Small, Lee Vaughn and hip-hop sensation 3rd Wave all believe in buying proud, and buying sustainably. What we wear should not have a negative impact on the water systems internationally.

Water pollution is an urgent issue affecting millions of people around the world.

This means that when we as consumers support a big brand's dirty secret and the broken fashion system forces us all to wear toxic clothes that leads to toxic water pollution.

Brands can end the secrecy by insisting their suppliers publicly divulge what chemicals are being discharged and by committing their brand and their supply chain to zero discharge of hazardous chemicals. We are asking Levi's to stand by its honourable intentions, act on the problem of toxic discharge and rise to the challenge of detoxing its fashion.

Now is Levi's time

Thanks to people like you, we were able to convince Zara, the world's largest retailer, to commit to work with its suppliers and take action to end its addiction to hazardous chemicals.

Levi's, the world's biggest jeans producer, has yet to make a credible commitment to clean up its toxic habit or make public a plan for how it will work with its suppliers to release their pollution data.

Levi's can change this, and it will if enough of us make our voices heard.

The solution is Toxic-Free fashion - this year alone, Zara, Marks & Spencer, and Mango have already committed to Detox because of #PeoplePower, will you add your name to these proud, South African performers this year asking Levi's to follow for a toxic-free fashion future?

Join the campaign, and let's give Levi's 501,000 reasons to #GoForth and Detox!

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