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Trendy T-Shirts Selling for $2, but No One Wants Them. You Won't Believe Why.

by Laurence-Emmanuelle Bédard Published on April 4, 2015

Sweaters for $5, stylish handbags for $25... We are all looking for the best deals. To meet this demand, vending machines offering inexpensive sweaters were placed in the streets of Berlin. Who could say no to such low prices? However, potential buyers ultimately rejected them once they discovered their origin.

In 2013, the non-profit organization Fashion Revolution declared the first Fashion Revolution Day, an event commemorating the collapse of Rana Plaza in Dhaka, Bangladesh. In 2012, more than 1,000 people working in the factory at that moment were killed, buried under the rubble. The owners had ignored many warnings concerning the precariousness of the buildings that threatened to collapse at any moment. JC Penney, Benetton, Walmart, and Joe Fresh subcontracted production to Rana Plaza at that time. The victims of the collapse have so far been denied justice.

On April 23, vending machines offering passersby cheap sweaters were placed in the streets of Berlin. At the moment of the transaction, a message made consumers aware that the products had been manufactured by exploited workers in South Asia. Instead of buying the cheap products, reluctant consumers instead chose to make a donation to the organization, which calls for reform of the fashion industry.

"We're not asking people to boycott their favourite stores, we must change the fashion industry from the inside by asking the brands and retailers we like, 'Who made my clothes? " says the founder of Fashion Revolution, Carry Somers. "Consumers are not the problem, but that does not mean that we should not be part of the solution," she added.

Fashion Revolution encourages people to take a stand and to tell brands that they must begin to take responsibility for their actions. To learn more, follow the hashtag #fashrev on social media.

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by Laurence-Emmanuelle Bédard