In Istanbul, shoppers at Zara outlets have found handwritten notes by workers claiming they have not been paid for their labour.
According to The Independent
, with 2200 stores worldwide and approximately $17.2bn in annual revenue, Zara, one of the giants in fashion brands, the retailer once again finds itself neck deep in controversy.
The Spanish chain has previously been connected to cases of environmental damage, foul play with young designers and failing to meet factory standards.
The handwritten notes have been found in the pockets of the merchandise, asking shoppers in Istanbul, to back their demands of meeting labour standards and pressuring the fashion giant to settle unpaid wages, as per The Independent which cited Associated Press.
It has been reported several of notes read: “I made this item you are going to buy, but I didn’t get paid for it.”
The workers in question were employed by a third party manufacturer, Bravo Tekstil. This company is also said to be the manufacturers for the fashion brands, Mango and Next.
In the past, Zara has also been subject to being sued for unethical working conditions and accused of exploiting Syrian refugees, as young as 15 years old, as well as utilizing both slave and child workforce.
Last month, Inditex, the parent company of Zara, issued a press release stating its commitment to working with International Labour Organisation (ILO) and “enhance labour conditions at all levels of the government sector chain.”
According to the release, Inditex are collaborating with ILO on project called SCORE, which is targeted at improving management systems and working conditions in factories in China and Turkey.
In response to the incident in Turkey, an Indetex spokesperson told Refinary29
: “Inditex has met all of its contractual obligations to Bravo Textil and is currently working on a proposal with the local IndustriALL affiliate, Mango, and Next to establish a hardship fund for the workers affected by the fraudulent disappearance of the Bravo factory’s owner…This hardship fund would cover unpaid wages, notice indemnity, unused vacation, and severance payments of workers that were employed at the time of the sudden shutdown of their factory in July 2016. We are committed to finding a swift solution for all of those impacted.”