Bonus Episode - We are joined by Envvironmental Science student and sustainable fashion writer Livia van Heerde to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on the fashion industry and what the future might look like.
As we recorded this episode, the societal landscape throughout the world was shifted yet again, in a hugely profound way. A social revolution is following after the brutal death of George Flloyd at the hands of Police in Minnesotta, USA was filmed. Protests have taken place around the world and social media has been abuzz with black people calling out racism. It has also begun a global discussion around allyship, anti racism and equal rights.
This was initially meant to be an episode discussing the effect of COVID-19 on the fashion industry however it is important that when talking about ethics and sustainability we also talk about equal rights. And there's no getting away from the huge gap in equality that exists in society, and within the fashion industry.
In this bonus episode we speak to Livia van Heerde, not only is she an interesting voice in the sustainable fashion space but she is an Environmental Science to Climate Change student. Livia writes about environmental sustainability and social responsibility as well as appearing on many panel discussions.
We discuss the plight of Bangladeshi garment workers, many of whom have been laid off due to $1.5 Billion of cancelled orders from big fashion brands. Union busting is now rife in Myanmar. Union members are being fired under the guise of financial difficulties as a result of lockdowns and cancelled orders. Closer to home, the Black Lives Matter movement is gaining momentum and we have seen fashion brands publish disingenuous statements of support for the black community. We question how brands will be implementing strategies to support black people going forwards throughout their companies and in their supply chains. With fashion week coming up, what will be the future of the fashion show? Livia explains the carbon footprint of fashion shows and events and asks whether we will see the privatisation or the further democratisation of fashion? She also shines light on the environmental impact of shopping online, and the problem of buying to return.
With thanks to our lovely guest Livia van Heerde
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