iLocal News Archives

A not so merry update from Freedom United

From Krysta Bisnauth, Freedom United

We’re winding down 2023 but forced labor doesn’t stop for the holidays.
 Although our updates aren’t full of cheer, we hope by sharing the news you may find renewed inspiration to avoid the inevitable holiday traps of Uyghur forced labor goods including clothing, food, vehicles and more.
 We also invite you to take action in any way you can to push for an end to Uyghur forced labor, including sharing this email with your friends and family.
Take action
In the midst of the holiday hustle, Shein snuck in a confidential filing for an initial public offering (IPO)[1] which means that the fast fashion giant could potentially raise billions on the U.S. stock exchange.
 This is despite the fact that laboratory results from reputable sources have linked Shein to the use of cotton originating from the Uyghur Region and the ongoing scrutiny from U.S. lawmakers.[2]
Shein should face import bans, not stock market gains.
Call out Shein
Following an onslaught of public pressure, Volkswagen conducted an audit of its plant in the Uyghur Region.
 The result? Volkswagen has now gone from doing the least of all car companies, to doing the worst.
 “No forced labor,” they claim – despite the evidence from advocates, their own investors, independent researchers, the United Nations and Uyghurs, including survivors, in the diaspora that the chances of an impartial, accurate audit are slim to none.[3]  The very auditing firm that reportedly conducted the investigation is distancing itself from the audit. Their statement says that only two employees from the firm were involved and that “no other team member participated in, supported or backed this project.”[4] Volkswagen has now created a dangerous precedent for discouraging other companies to cut ties with the Uyghur Region.
Take action against Volkswagen
Companies aren’t the only culprits: a new report from Sheffield Hallam University reveals that Uyghur forced labor goods are flooding the E.U. market.[5]
 The report identifies 4 major China-headquartered fabric and apparel manufacturers that have significant ties to the Uyghur Region and can be found in supply chains of 39 major retailers including Nike and Inditex (Zara).
 According to the report, “A substantial volume of apparel tainted by Uyghur forced labor is moving into the EU without restriction.” This is why the authors call for strong forced labor regulation in the E.U. and why Freedom United launched a new action directed at E.U.
Tell the E.U. to act
It’s the season of togetherness and your support remains invaluableThank you for being part of this movement. In solidarity, Krysta and the team supporting the Freedom United community 

 Krysta Bisnauth
Advocacy, Freedom United







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