European Youth Event hosts debate on World Fair Trade Day

9 May 2014 (Strasbourg) – A public debate amongst a Fair Trade producer from El Salvador, candidates to the European Parliament elections and dozens of young Europeans will take place on the occasion of World Fair Trade Day. The debate will take place tomorrow 10 May in Strasbourg, in the context of the European Youth Event 2014.

The European Youth Event will join the worldwide celebrations on World Fair Trade Day by hosting a debate on the main stage of the European Youth Event on Saturday 10 May at 12h CET.

Mr Jose Alexander Flores, member of the Fair Trade producer association APRAINORES in El Salvador will, as keynote speaker, kick-off a debate amongst candidates to the European Parliament and dozens of young Europeans on how the European Union could support Fair Trade after the European Parliament elections taking place from 22 to 25 May 2014 across the 28 European Union Member States.

The event is part of the Vote for Fair Trade (Vote4FT) campaign, co-funded by the European Commission, that aims at creating a dialogue between Fair Trade producers, EU citizens and EU policy-makers and take a pro-active role in shaping EU policies in support of Fair Trade. The Fair Trade manifesto, which has been endorsed by three leading European Commission Presidency candidates and numerous candidates to the European Parliament elections, lays down the main five Fair Trade movement demands to the European Union for the legislative period 2014-2019.

Notes to editors:

On 9-11 May the European Parliament will bring together thousands of young people for the European Youth Event 2014 (EYE), which has as this year’s motto "Ideas for a better Europe". More information under: link

The event is an initiative of the European Parliament organised in partnership with the European Youth Forum, the platform of youth organisations in Europe. It represents 99 youth organisations, both National Youth Councils and International Non-Governmental Youth Organisation.More information under: www.youthforum.org

Aprainores is a Fair Trade producer association consisting of over 60 families located around San Carlos Lempa, near the mouth of the Lempa River in El Salvador. Families are subsistence farmers whose sole cash income is from small cashew holdings. Together they own a processing plant employing 40-70 seasonal workers (up to nine months). More information under: link.

World Fair Trade Day, an initiative of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO), takes place on the second Saturday of May of each year. It is an inclusive worldwide festival of events celebrating Fair Trade as a tangible contribution to the fight against poverty and exploitation, climate change and the economic crisis that has the greatest impact on the world’s most vulnerable populations.From the Pacific islands to the Andes, Palestine to Bangladesh, Mongolia to Kenya, seminars, hunger banquets, fairs, concerts and drumming and Fair Trade fashion shows will mark the day under the theme “Fair Trade People”, recognising that Fair Trade producers and the people buying their products are the real drivers of the growth of Fair Trade.

The Fair Trade Advocacy Office (FTAO) speaks out on behalf of the Fair Trade movement for Fair Trade and Trade Justice with the aim to improve the livelihoods of marginalised producers and workers in the South. The FTAO is a joint initiative of Fairtrade International, the European Fair Trade Association and the World Fair Trade Organization-Europe. Through these three networks the FTAO represents an estimate of 2.5 million Fair Trade producers and workers from 70 countries, 24 labelling initiatives, over 500 specialised Fair Trade importers, 4,000 World Shops and more than 100,000 volunteers.

Contact:

Sebastien Leclef | Project Coordinator

Tel: +32 (0) 2 543 19 24 | Fax: +32 (0) 2 543 44 44 | leclef@fairtrade-advocacy.org

Fair Trade Advocacy Office

Village Partenaire - bureau 1 | Rue Fernand Bernierstraat, 15 | 1060 - Brussels – Belgium 

www.fairtrade-advocacy.org

EU1bb32dThis document has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of Fair Trade Advocacy Office and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

 

Your clothes already tell a story about who you are. Now they can tell a better one.

FashionRevolutioDay

The global fashion industry is coming together to highlight the challenges of the fashion supply chain, from exploitation to pollution, with the inaugural Fashion Revolution Day on the 24th April 2014, when a series of global events and initiatives will highlight the fashion industry's most pressing issues and engage local communities to demand greater transparency throughout.

On April 24th last year, 1133 people were killed when the Rana Plaza factory complex collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Many more were injured.

The textile industry is widely regarded as a major contributor to global pollution but, according to research by Deloitte, 2 in 3 fashion companies are not focused on engaging consumers with regard to sustainability. According to the Australian Fashion Report in 2013[1], 61% of companies surveyed didn’t know where their garments were made.

Fashion Revolution Day says enough is enough.

Fashion is a force to be reckoned with. It inspires, provokes, leads and entertains. And, from April 2014, it’s going to do even more. Because we’re turning fashion into a force for good.

With one simple question: 'Who Made Your Clothes?' we’re asking everyone who’s taking part in Fashion Revolution Day to be curious, find out, do something about it, by wearing an item of clothing inside out, photographing it and then sharing it with the hashtag #insideout on all social networks.

That way, people all over the world – designers and icons, high street shops and high couture, cotton farmers and factory workers, campaigners, academics, the media and any individual who cares about what they wear – can come together to demand greater transparency.

There will be events and activities from Somerset House to the House of Lords and all around the UK catwalks and panels discussions, film screenings and knitting evenings, quiz nights and gatherings. Global events will include a mass catwalk in the centre of Barcelona; a workshop in Nepal on how to clean up waste water from dye houses; a fashion show in Bangladesh with producers wearing the clothes they make; a touring exhibition in Swaziland documenting the lives of local artisans and fashion boutiques the world over will turn their window displays #insideout to show their involvement.

Supported by some of the biggest names in ethical fashion, including activist Bianca Jagger and journalists Lucy Siegle and Tamsin Blanchard, Fashion Revolution Day marks the anniversary of the Rana Plaza factory disaster in Dhaka, Bangladesh, but represents much more than that, as this is only the beginning of a long journey of transformation.

Over 20 celebrities, including eco-fashion icon and Fashion Revolution Day Board member Livia Firth, retail expert and broadcaster Mary Portas and television and entrepreneur Jo Wood, have already lent their support to the campaign by being photographed with their t-shirt insideout by iconic British portrait photographer Trevor Leighton.

As well as the multitude of global events to mark the day, there will be a series of global ‘social media takeovers’ hosted at @Fash_Rev. These are scheduled events, held on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to allow like_minded people to connect and discuss a topic of choice. Subjects for discussion will include how to revamp unworn clothes, first hand accounts of life for workers in factories that supply our best_known retailers, Twitter Q&As from organisations such as Greenpeace and Fairtrade Foundation and Centre For Sustainable Fashion, as well as Facebook mini blogs from Fashion Revolution board members and supporters.

“The idea for Fashion Revolution Day came to me in the bath,” said Founder of Fashion Revolution and ethical fashion pioneer, Cary Somers. “I saw that the Rana Plaza disaster could act as a catalyst, with the heightened awareness around ethical fashion providing a window to bring about real change. Fashion Revolution Day represents an exciting opportunity to reconnect fashion_lovers with the people who made their clothes.”

"Fashion Revolution Day promises to be one of the very few truly global campaigns to emerge this century" says Baroness Young of Hornsey who set up the All_Party Parliamentary Group on Ethics and Sustainability in Fashion.

Co-founder Orsola de Castro says: “With one simple gesture, #insideout, we want you to ask: 'Who Made Your Clothes?' this action will encourage people to imagine the ‘thread’ from the garment to the machinist that sewed it and all the way down to the farmer that grew the cotton it was made from. We hope that Fashion Revolution Day will initiate a process of discovery, raising awareness of the fact that buying is only the last step in a long journey involving hundreds of people: the invisible workforce behind the clothes we wear".

Find out more at www.fashionrevolution.org. Like Fashion Revolution on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fashionrevolution.org and follow @Fash_Rev on Twitter.

For more photos, information or to arrange an interview please contact:
• Martine Parry _ martine.julseth@fairtrade.org.uk
• Jen Harris – jen@kaper.uk.com _ +44 (0)203 301 2210
• Lisa Shetabi – Lisa@kaper.uk.com
How to support Fashion Revolution Day:
• On the 24th April, wear an item of clothing inside out
• Photograph yourself in it
• Ask the brand Who Made Your Clothes?
• Share the picture on social media with the hashtag #insideout.

About Fashion Revolution:
Fashion Revolution is composed of key figures from the fashion industry and beyond: industry leaders; press; campaigners; consultants; representatives from charities and campaign organisations; academics and more. With a wide range of expertise, the Fashion Revolution Advisory Committee will work to ensure that this day becomes a significant, annual global event. We have country co-ordinators in over 50 countries who will be participating in the first Fashion Revolution Day on 24 April 2014.



[1] The Australian Fashion Report launched 19th August 2013 by Baptist World Aid and Not for Sale Australia!


Vote for Fair Trade Manifesto is launched with the endorsement of two European Commission President candidates

4 April 2014 (Brussels) - The Vote for Fair Trade (Vote4FT) Manifesto was officially launched at an event hosted by the European Parliament Fair Trade Working Group in the evening of 2 April. The Manifesto, which lays down the main Fair Trade movement demands to the European Union for the 2014-2019 term, has already been endorsed by Martin Schulz, common candidate for the Party of European Socialists and by Ska Keller, co-candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission for the European Green Party.

Martin Schulz SpeechBubble                   Ska Keller speech bubble-002  High-quality picture here.                                                                                     High-quality picture here.

The Fair Trade movement launched in 2013 the Vote for Fair Trade (Vote4FT) campaign, with the financial assistance of the European Commission, with the objective to create a dialogue between EU citizens, Fair Trade producers and EU decision-makers on the policies that the EU should put in place to support Fair Trade. A key milestone in this campaign is the public launch of the Vote4FT Manifesto, which lays down themain five demands to the European Union for the 2014-2019 term.

Martin Schulz, common candidate for the Party of European Socialists and Ska Keller, co-candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission for the European Green Party, have already endorsed the five Fair Trade movement demands. The Manifesto has also been signed by key candidates to the European Parliament elections from various European political families in the Parliament, including the European People’s Party and the Party of the European Left. Seven of these candidates, across countries and parties, seized the opportunity to explain why they support Fair Trade in a short video that is available online.

The Fair Trade movement is composed of 2.5 million producers and workers from 70 countries, 24 labelling initiatives, over 500 specialised Fair Trade importers, 4,000 World Shops and more than 100,000 volunteers. On the run up to the European Parliament elections taking place from 20 to 25 May, the Fair Trade movement will be engaging candidates running for the European elections in more than 20 EU Member States, asking them to endorse the 5 demands in the manifesto and making the results available on the campaign website.

Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, stated “More transparency is badly needed in EU trade policy-making, so the best way to start is by publishing which European elections candidates committ to which of the five main Fair Trade movement demands. We hope to provide information to allow EU citizens to make an informed voting decision when they go to the polls”.

 

Contact:

Sebastien Leclef

Project Coordinator

Fair Trade Advocacy Office

Village Partenaire - bureau 1

Rue Fernand Bernierstraat, 15

1060 - Brussels - Belgium

Tel: +32 (0)2 543 19 23

E-mail: leclef@fairtrade-advocacy.org

Website: www.fairtrade-advocacy.org

 

EU1bb32d

This document has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of Fair Trade Advocacy Office and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

Third candidate for the European Commission Presidency announces support for the Fair Trade Manifesto

24 April 2014 (Brussels) - Another leading candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission has endorsed the Fair Trade manifesto. Meeting with the FTAO team, Jean-Claude Juncker, candidate for the European People’s Party, stated his support for the Vote for Fair Trade Manifesto, thereby joining Ska Keller and Martin Schulz, who had done so earlier this month.  

Keller Schulz Juncker support FT   Click here for higher resolution pictures of  respectively the groupS. KellerM. Schulz and J.C. Juncker.

The Fair Trade movement launched in 2013 the Vote for Fair Trade (Vote4FT) campaign, with the financial assistance of the European Commission, with the objective to create a dialogue between EU citizens, Fair Trade producers and EU decision-makers on the policies that the EU should put in place to support Fair Trade. A key document in this campaign is the Vote4FT Manifesto, which lays down the main five demands to the European Union for the 2014-2019 term.
 
Jean-Claude Juncker, candidate for the European People’s Party, now joined Martin Schulz, common candidate for the Party of European Socialists and Ska Keller, co-candidate for the Presidency of the European Commission for the European Green Party, who had already endorsed the five Fair Trade movement demands earlier this month. The Manifesto has also been signed by key candidates to the European Parliament elections from various European political families in the Parliament, including the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe and the Party of the European Left. Ten of these candidates, across countries and parties, seized the opportunity to explain why they support Fair Trade in a short video that is available online.
 
Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, stated “We welcome the support to the Vote for Fair Trade manifesto by three lead European Commission Presidency candidates, reflecting the growing support to Fair Trade by EU citizens. The times of free trade fundamentalism are over. The Commission badly needs a new leadership that puts in place a European strategy for Fair Trade”. 
 
The Fair Trade movement is composed of 2.5 million producers and workers from 70 countries, 24 labelling initiatives, over 500 specialised Fair Trade importers, 4,000 World Shops and more than 100,000 volunteers. On the run up to the European Parliament elections taking place from 20 to 25 May, the Fair Trade movement will be engaging candidates running for the European elections in more than 20 EU Member States, asking them to endorse the 5 demands in the manifesto and making the results available on the campaign website.

Contact:

Sebastien Leclef | leclef@fairtrade-advocacy.org | Tel: +32 (0)2 543 19 23

Fair Trade Advocacy Office

Village Partenaire - bureau 1 | 15 rue Fernand Bernierstraat | 1060 Brussels - Belgium

EU1bb32dThis document has been produced with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of Fair Trade Advocacy Office and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

European civil society coalition calls on MEP candidates to support trade and investment rules that work for people and the planet

2 April 2014 (Brussels) - European civil society coalition calls on MEP candidates to support trade and investment rules that work for people and the planet

Today, a European alliance of over 50 civil society organisations [1] will launch the Alternative Trade Mandate pledge campaign [2], calling on European Parliament election candidates to make EU trade and investment policy serve people and the planet, not just the profit of a few large corporations.

“The EU’s current trade and investment policy is a recipe for disaster for people around the world. The EU is leading an aggressive agenda to open markets for global agri-business. This is wiping out small farmers and is a major cause of hunger. Excessive investor rights take away much needed policy space. We need to break away from this corporate driven agenda,” said Lyda Fernanda Forero of the Transnational Institute, a member of the Alternative Trade Mandate Alliance.

The online pledge campaign will run in six EU languages (EN, FR, ES, DE, GR, HU) and will enable activists and citizens to ask candidates to pledge in support of a paradigm shift in EU trade and investment policy. The website will monitor which candidates have supported different parts of the pledge.

MEP candidates will be asked to support measures that enable people to control their own local food systems as well as core labour standards and human rights’ assessments of EU trade and investment policy. Candidates will also be asked to oppose the controversial investor-state dispute settlement mechanism and to call on the European Commission to immediately publish all texts from trade and investment negotiations with third countries such as, for example, the United States.

“EU trade deals are negotiated behind closed doors in the interests of a few rich corporations. People who are affected by these deals, both in the EU and abroad, are not consulted. We need MEPs to stand up for an open and democratic EU trade policy-making process which is controlled by the people of Europe and their elected representatives, rather than being driven by unelected technocrats and corporate lobby groups,” said Sergi Corbalán, executive director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office, a member of the Alternative Trade Mandate Alliance.

The pledge campaign is the result of a four-year process of public workshops held all over Europe during which the Alternative Trade Mandate was developed; it is a 20-page civil society proposal to democratise EU trade and investment policy and put environmental protection as well as human and labour rights at its heart [3]. Some MEPs have already supported the proposal via video messages [4].

“At a time of multiple global crises, the European Parliament needs MEPs who will support trade rules that work for people and the planet. We need MEPs who will bring trade deals out of the shadows and into the light. We call on MEP candidates to stand up for democratic trade and investment rules that serve people, the economy and the environment at large – not just the profit interests of a few,” says Amélie Canonne, co-ordinator of the Alternative Trade Mandate Alliance.

Today and tomorrow, members of the Alternative Trade Mandate alliance will meet with MEPs and political groups in the European Parliament in Brussels to gather their support to the pledge campaign. At the margins of the EU-Africa Summit (in Brussels today and tomorrow), campaigners will today also participate in a morning protest against the EU’s Economic Partnership Agreements (EPAs) with countries from Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific [5].

Contact:

Lyda Fernanda Forero, Transnational Institute [ES], [EN]

+31685086340, lydafernanda@tni.org

Sergi Corbalán, Fair Trade Advocacy Office [ES], [EN], [FR]

+32 (0) 2 543 19 23, corbalan@fairtrade-advocacy.org

Amélie Canonne, coordinator of the Alternative Trade Mandate Alliance [FR], [EN]

+33.6.24.40.07.06, alternativetrademandate@gmail.com

Notes:

[1] Current members of the Alternative Trade Mandate Alliance are: Afrika Kontakt (Denmark), Arbeitsgemeinschaft Bäuerliche Landwirtschaft (Germany), AITEC (France), Alternative Trade Network (Greece), Attac Austria, Attac France, Attac Germany, Attac Hungary, Attac Spain, Bothends (Netherlands), CAWN, CNCD (Belgium), Colibri (Germany), Comhlamh (Ireland), Commission of Filipino migrant workers (Netherlands), Corporate Europe Observatory (Belgium), Ecologistas en Accion (Spain), European Milkboard, Fair Trade Advocacy Office (Belgium), Fairwatch (Italy), FDCL (Germany), FIAN Germany, Food & Water Europe, Germanwatch (Germany), GMB (UK), Misereor (Germany), No Patents on Life! (Germany), Oxfam Germany, Philippinenbuero (Germany), Platform Aarde Boer Consument (Earth, Farmer, Consumer – Netherlands), Platform of Filipino Migrant Organisations in Europe, PowerShift (Germany), Seattle to Brussels Network, SOMO (Netherlands), Terra Nuova (Italy), Trade Justice Movement (UK), Transnational Institute (Netherlands), Trocaire (Ireland), Vedegylet (Hungary), War on Want (UK), WEED (Germany), World Development Movement (UK), Za Zemiata (Bulgaria), 11.11.11. (Belgium)

Our supporter organisations: ActionAid Netherlands, Africa Roots Movement (Netherlands), Afrikagrupperna (Sweden), Africa-Europe Faith and Justice Network (AEFJN), Afrikagrupperna (Sweden), ASEED Europe, Attac Denmark, CEE Bankwatch Network (headquatered in the Czech Republic), Clean Clothes Campaign Netherlands, Confédération paysanne (France), Dutch section of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF – Netherlands), European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU), FAIR TRADE HELLA (Greece), FIOM-CGIL (Metalworkers Federation – Italy), FIAN Netherlands, FNV Netherlands, France Amérique Latine (France), Friends of the Earth Europe, Glopolis (Czech Republic), Hegoa (Spain), Indian Committee of the Netherlands, Milieu Defensie (Netherlands), National Peace and Justice Network (UK), OIKOS (Netherlands), Philippinenbüro (Germany), Platform Aarde Boer Consumer (Netherlands), Platform for an economy based on sustainability and solidarity (Netherlands), Respect Network in Europe, STRO (Netherlands), Supermacht (Netherlands), Traidcraft (UK), Transnational Migrant Platform (TMP), TRUSTED Migrants (Netherlands), La Via Campesina Europe, Wemos (Netherlands), XminY (Netherlands)

[2] Visit the pledge campaign website at: www.alternativetrademandate.org

[3] Download the Alternative Trade Mandate in English ( http://www.alternativetrademandate.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Trade-time_for_a_new_vision-JAN14-PRINT.pdf), Spanish (http://www.alternativetrademandate.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Time_for_a_new_vision-ES-JAN14-PRINT.pdf), French (http://www.alternativetrademandate.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Time_for_a_new_vision-FR-PRINT.pdf) and Dutch (http://www.alternativetrademandate.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/Time_for_a_new_vision-NL-PRINT.pdf)

[4] Why support the Alternative Trade Mandate? Responses from trade justice activists, http://www.alternativetrademandate.org/why-supporting-the-alternative-trade-mandate-some-responses-in-video/

[5] For more information on civil society activities around the EU-Africa summit, see: http://www.mynewsdesk.com/se/afrikagrupperna/news/brussels-the-epa-that-the-eu-imposes-vs-the-trade-policy-that-africa-needs-81050

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