Synopses & Reviews
With sales of more than five hundred billion US dollars a year, the fashion industry is one of the most important sectors of the global economy, employing millions of men, women, and often children in the developing world. And yet its record is far from pretty. The collapse of Bangladesh's Rana Plaza with some thirty-five hundred desperately underpaid garment workers inside was a shocking example of what can go wrong when manufacturers ruthlessly cut costs while turning a blind eye to labor rights and workplace safety.
Written by an appareland#160;industry insider, Fixing Fashion argues that the true legacy of Rana Plaza is increased awareness of how cheap, disposable clothing has ledand#160;time and time againand#160;to serious community, environmental, andand#160;labor rights abuses.and#160;Ethical supply chain professionaland#160;Michael Lavergne explores:
The birth of the global apparel trade, from colonialism and slavery to today's neoliberal trade agenda How the infamous race to the bottom has led to some of the worst social and environmental excesses in the global apparel industry The rise of a new breed of entrepreneurs and stakeholders driving change and transparency across international supply chains
By taking a hard look at the very real impacts of our consumer culture's addiction to disposable fashion, Fixing Fashion challenges each of us to take full responsibility for understanding the hidden cost of our clothes.
Michael Lavergne is an ethical supply chain professional committed to sustainable fashion industryand#160;and the protection of labor, environmental and human rights in the developing world.
A rare insiderand#8217;s globetrotting tour of the ethically challenged, complex, contradictory, and maddening global fashion industry. If youand#8217;ve ever wondered how an industry with so much potential to do so much good could permit thousands of vulnerable workers to needlessly die at Rona Plaza in Bangladesh, read Michael Lavergneand#8217;s highly personal wakeup call.
--Dr. David Doorey
Professor of Labour Law and Supply Chain Governance, York University, Toronto
Fixing Fashion offers brilliant insight into all that is broken in the apparel industry. Michael Lavergneand#8217;s brave and honest telling of what really goes on behind the scenes is an eye-opener that fuels the impetus for change. His thorough political and historical depiction that spans centuries and#150;from the roots of global trade, the gross exploitation of textile workers and the Industrial revolution, to the rise of cotton, the role of advertising and consumption and all the scandals and headlines and#150; makes for a powerfully evocative narrative that is crucial to solving the many problems facing the fashion industry. In order to fix what is broken, we must first learn how it came to be broken.
---Kelly Drennan, Founding Executive Director, Fashion Takes Action
A must-read for for every designer and apparel executive who does not yet have full transparency in their supply chain. Fixing Fashion outlines how exploitation has been entrenched in the apparel industry for over a century. Lavergne then uses this historical context to map opportunities for longterm change, including a long list of change makers who are redefining fashion.
---Kate Black, author, Magnifeco: Your Head-to-Toe guide to Ethical Fashion and Non-toxic Beauty
Fixing Fashion is a fascinating personal and historical journey through the complex web of clothing supply chains. Author Michael Lavergne urges us to reflect on how we are linked, through that web, to people around the world (including millions of children) who are embedded in the clothes that we wear. The book is a compelling call to government, business and all of us towards increased transparency and greater action to ensure more just and sustainable supply chains.
---Harry Kits, Senior Advisor Corporate Engagement, World Vision Canada
Through his seasoned and humble eyes, Michael Lavergne offers a rare glimpse into the complexities of the apparel industry in his book Fixing Fashion. Taking us through compelling stories from his personal experiences, and layering on news accounts of landmark human rights and environmental events in recent history, Michael invites us to question our assumptions about where our clothing comes from and how we, as consumers, can make better choices going forward. This is a must-read book for anyone who cares about the human and environmental toll of our clothing and the companies behind the labels.
---Amy Hall, Director, Social Consciousness, EILEEN FISHER
Who makes our clothes? How are they designed and marketed? After the shocking Rana Plaza factory collapse in 2013, people started asking these pertinent questions. Michael Lavergne's book Fixing Fashions soberly dissects the 'fast fashion' industry and looks at how to fix it. This should be compulsory reading for decision makers, designers and consumers.
---Paul Dewar, Member of Parliament Ottawa Centre, Foreign Affairs Critic for the NDP
Combines a captivating personal, social and political history of business, trade, marketing and politics through the lens of the global rag trade. Lavergneand#8217;s unique perspective as an industry insider who has travelled the world sourcing goods for global clothing brands gives us both a first-hand view of the social and environmental problems in apparel manufacturing as well as a deep understanding of why they persist. Lavergneand#8217;s account will inform and inspire students of business and international development as well as present and future business leaders who will be called upon to tackle the serious and complex problems he uncovers. Thankfully Lavergneand#8217;s detailed account also points towards paths for change.
---Kevin Thomas, LLM | Director of Shareholder Engagement, SHARE - Shareholder Association for Research and Education
In Fixing Fashion, Michael Lavergne offers a rare insider view of how the globalized garment industry works and why worker rights abuses are so endemic to that industry. He also offers hope that fundamental change is possible.
---Bob Jeffcott, Policy Analyst, Maquila Solidarity Network
Is global fashion a wolf in sheepand#8217;s clothing? An industry insider takes a hard look at the apparel trade.
About the Author
Michael Lavergne is an ethical supply chain professional who has spent the past eighteen years leading sourcing initiatives across Asia, Latin America, The Middle East, Africa and North American markets. He gained experience in labor, human rights and environmental issues in Central America, Mexico and SE Asia and has supported responsible industry development in East Africa and The Middle East. Michael has written on ethical trade issues for Canadian Business Magazine, The Toronto Star, and The National Post, among others. He is a board member of Fashion Takes Action, and speaks regularly at industry events such as The Sustainable Fashion Forum and the World Ethical Apparel Roundtable.