Criticisms of fast fashion
Fast fashion is a term used to describe a highly profitable business model that replicates high fashion designs; however this quick turnaround of goods has been heavily criticised. Many businesses working by this model have been accused of not paying fair wages, operating sweatshops and not working in a sustainable manner.
In 2017, Primark was no stranger to accusations such as these, after it was among 260 employers accused of “cheating workers” by failing to pay the legal minimum wage. According to the Business & Human Rights Resource Centre, Primark was found to have underpaid staff after it deducted money from their salaries to pay for uniforms.
Therefore, Primark’s ability to repay such a huge sum to the Government raises some questions on how it was able to so, as Lovell alluded to.
Since the Government rolled out is furlough scheme, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS), many businesses have relied on its support to retain staff. But this has also led to a raft in criticism over the decisions that employers made throughout the past year.
Lovell continued: “As predicted it has led to a raft of criticism levelled against many decisions companies have made in the last year – amongst the backdrop that it is in the public interest to discuss these issues if they have relied on public funds.”
She also pointed out that many businesses also haven’t paid back their COVID-19 support funds, but have instead offered bonuses to some of their executives, a move that may also be condemned in the coming weeks.
Lovell concluded: “We have seen countless criticisms of other companies in recent weeks such as Foxtons and Domino’s who haven’t paid back their [COVID-19] support funds but nevertheless have paid bonuses to their executives.”
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