Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Will Introduce the First Federal Fashion Bill; the FABRIC Act Seeks to End Wage Theft

 Senator Kirsten Gillibrand Will Introduce the First Federal Fashion Bill; the FABRIC Act Seeks to End Wage Theft

Gillibrand goes on to say that providing resources for start-up costs is an important part of the growth of domestic fashion making. “It’s important that we invest heavily in the development of workers. We need to train the next generation of fashion industry leaders to make this job work effectively.

Ayesha Barenblat, founder and CEO of fashion advocacy group Remake, which helped draft the bill, explained that creating and updating garment jobs in the United States is more critical than ever because of the disrupted global supply. chain. “The supply chain has changed since the pandemic made business difficult for many brands, and for the first time, we saw interest in products close to the coast,” Barenblat said. He gave the example of mask and PPE supplies in early 2020. The United States would have to rely on imports in an emergency if they could have been in the country if the infrastructure had allowed it. He goes on to say that the problem is twofold because many of the factories in the United States are severely lagging behind from a technological standpoint. “If you go to Cambodia, Sri Lanka, and other places around the world, you can see that the industry is going strong,” he explained. “The grant could allow for needed updates that will bring in a larger workforce.”

Both Gillibrand and proponents supporting the bill say bipartisan support is likely. “Many of my Republican colleagues are working on fees regarding imports from China, and the FABRIC Act will support those efforts,” Gillibrand explained. Barenblat echoed that sentiment, noting that the advancement and revitalization of workers is of interest nationwide, not just in New York and California. It’s something he’s confident representatives across the board will get.

California garment workers fighting for the passage of SB62 also offered their support for a federal extension. “The FABRIC Act is needed because it will improve the well -being of garment workers and their families,” Cris Lopez, a garment worker and member of the Garment Worker Center in Los Angeles, said via email. “The FABRIC Act not only offers workers’ protections for our wages but also provides investment in industry. It promises more jobs and better wages, ultimately supporting those most in need — our children, the elderly — and ensures better education, health, and housing opportunities. ”

Senator Gillibrand will hold a press conference on May 13 introducing the bill to the Ferrera factory press in New York City’s garment district. “As a domestic manufacturer, it will create important programs to expand our unionized workforce as well as innovate with advanced machinery to modernize our prestigious business,” said COO Gabrielle Ferrera. Vogue about business support for the bill. Ferrera factory workers are currently united through Worker’s United, another endorser of the bill. Other industry endorsers include The Model Alliance, Fashion Revolution, Center for the Advancement of Garment Making, Fashion Connection, Skilled Laborers Brigade, Sustainable Brooklyn, Custom Collaborative, The Slow Factory, New Standard Institute, and the California College of the Arts fashion design program. .

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