Revolutionary changes to the fashion industry are being initialised by local businesswomen with the development of the Child Labour Free (CLF) trademark. For Michelle Pratt and business partner, Nikki Prendergast who own childcare centres in Tauranga and nationwide, a sudden realisation happened when they discovered there was no way of knowing for sure whether the clothes we buy have been made by children. Upon finding out there was no child-free accreditation available globally these women took on the monumental task of creating a process where you can as a brand gain a CLF trademark.
Launched in September this year the response to the legislation has being overwhelming.
Local shoe designer Chaos and Harmony have joined the core values fundamental to their business. "It is part of our core values to not only work ethically from a humanitarian point of view but also to get the best last/shoe structures and create the best shoes possible. Aligning our brand with Child Labor Free means we are working with people that value what they do without sacrificing people who can't speak for themselves.”
Cool kids on the block Stolen Girlfriends Club have also joined the journey. Dan Gosling and Marc Moore want SGC to be accredited because they want to make sure they are doing the right things everywhere they can. Marc said: “I want to know our factories are legit. I couldn’t sleep at night if it was otherwise. This initiative is creating awareness because too many times the consumer knows little about the manufacturing process and just worries about the end cost. But how about this idea. Paying a bit more for a product that you know has being ethically made. We would all sleep a lot better know that.”
Other top New Zealand designers such as Kate Sylvester, Twenty Seven Names and Ruby are working on their accreditation. International shoe giant Toms have already gained accreditation with many others soon to be revealed.
Michelle said the response has being phenomenal and overwhelming and it is the start to creating a world where consumers and companies can work together making a difference to the lives of children and community they live in.
Who says fashion can’t have a conscience.