Who doesn’t love that feeling of finding a great piece of clothing that fits just right and makes you smile when you look in the mirror? Fashion is a fun form of self-expression that can help us feel really good about ourselves. While there are many ways to enjoy this form of self-expression and art ethically and sustainably, many fashion companies harm animals, the environment, and garment workers in order to produce their clothing. This is usually the case for “fast fashion.”
Source: Patriot Act/Youtube
It’s common knowledge that certain articles of clothing, like fur, leather, and other exotic animal skins, harm animals. While many people choose to ignore this or prioritize their clothes over innocent lives, fashion brands are waking up to their responsibility to stop this torture. Many are no longer using fur and animal skins. Some brands are even making animal rights messages during fashion shows and going vegan.
In addition to the harm it causes animals, fast fashion is also extremely harmful to the workers that make the clothes. They are paid low wages, work long hours in horrible environments, and are subject to various human rights abuses. Often times fast fashion companies even use child labor.
The fashion industry is also a huge polluter. They use pesticide-intensive crops, use and pollute hundreds of gallons of water per shirt, and cause microplastics to get into our water. The process of making clothes is incredibly destructive and wasteful. Sadly, this impact continues after the clothes are already made.
Fast fashion companies often end up with excess clothing at the end of a season and even though some put these garments on sale, they usually still end up with leftover pieces. Rather than reusing these garments in future seasons or donating the excess clothing to people in need, these companies make giant bonfires out of their unsold clothing. Not only is this extremely cruel to people in need, but it is also terrible for the environment. Burning the clothes, often made with synthetic materials, releases greenhouse gases into the environment. It also launches large amounts of toxins and microplastics into the air, ground, and water, and that feeds back into our ecosystem. Fortunately, France is fighting against this wasteful and dangerous practice. They decided to ban all fashion bonfires, starting in 2023. Let’s push other countries to follow France’s lead and take a stand. Sign this petition to demand that the U.S. pass a law banning all clothing designers, manufacturers, and stores from burning excess, unsold merchandise!
Sign this petition to demand that the U.S. pass a law banning all clothing designers, manufacturers, and stores from burning excess, unsold merchandise!
In addition to signing this petition, you can help people, the planet, and animals by making your wardrobe more sustainable. The best ways to do this are mending, upcycling, and repurposing old clothing, rather than buying new ones; being a conscious and low-impact consumer by considering what you really need; and shopping second-hand or from sustainable and ethical brands. You could also host a clothing swap with friends for a fun, eco-friendly activity!
To continue speaking up, sign these other petitions as well:
- Demand a living wage for garment workers!
- Ban Fur Farms in the U.S.
- Ban Cruel Angora Rabbit Fur
- Tell Electronics Companies to Reduce E-Waste by Creating Products Easier to Repair
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