Pressure mounting for UNIQLO to pay Indonesian workers compensation

Following the actions on International Women's Day in Hong Kong, two Indonesian unions protested at the Japanese Embassy in Jakarta on Thursday, March 23, 2017 at 10.00 A.M. They demand justice for workers at the shuttered factory PT Jaba Garmindo in Indonesia, which supplied Japanese retailer Uniqlo.

The Indonesian factory closed without providing workers with US$10.8 million in legally required compensation. PT Jaba Garmindo entered bankruptcy in April 2015 without providing final wages and severance benefits to 4,000 workers at multiple locations. 

Join the letter petition, and our demand that UNIQLO provide substantial financial contribution for workers of PT Jaba Garmindo. In addition, UNIQLO must commit to paying a living wage to workers across the supply chain and guarantee that workers in UNIQLO supplier factories have the right to safely organise. 

The actions are supported by Clean Clothes Campaign, War on Want, People and Planet, SACOM, Globalization Monitor and Yokohama Action Research. Last week protests took place in Japan, targeting UNIQLO stores. 

As this report details, the buyers have, to date, refused to make the workers whole. Failure to provide legally required severance pay is a very common form of wage theft in the garment industry; owners often simply abandon factories, leaving the country without making any arrangement for workers’ severance or payment to other creditors. Over the past five years, an increasing number of international apparel brands have taken responsibility for ensuring that these workers are paid, often by directly providing funds to workers.  

Over the past decade, student and consumer pressure has successfully pushed international apparel brands to take responsibility for funds denied workers when their factories close. In a landmark case in 2013, after significant pressure from the CCC network, United Students Against Sweatshops, U.S. universities and SumOfUs, adidas directly compensated workers for legally required severance owed by a supplier factory in Indonesia. Since then, in response to demands by workers and international advocacy organizations, Disney, Fruit of the Loom, Hanesbrands, adidas, Nike, H&M, and Walmart have either directly compensated workers denied severance or required their supply chain partners to do so in Honduras, El Salvador, Indonesia, and Cambodia.  

UNIQLO, your supplier - your responsibility!