Child Labor in Uzbekistan
Every year the government of Uzbekistan forces up to 2 million children to leave school and work in the cotton fields. During the harvest, children are exposed to harmful pesticides and have to work long hours. Those who fail to meet their quota can face physical punishment or expulsion from school. Our client, Responsible Sourcing Network, garnered signatures from some of the world’s largest apparel companies to publicly state their opposition to this practice. Ripple recommended offering this story as an exclusive to Women’s Wear Daily – the most widely read and influential publication in the fashion industry. The strategy worked. The publication ran a story with the headline: “Cotton Pickin’ Mad” and, with our encouragement, specifically mentioned Gulnara Karimova, whose father, Islam Karimov, is the president of Uzbekistan and has a fashion line of her own.