The New York Fashion Sustainability and Social Accountability Act is making headlines across the fashion industry. If passed, this groundbreaking legislation will make the industry legally accountable for its social and environmental impact at a scale never before seen. Let’s dive in and find out more about it and how it may affect you.
Who is behind the New York Fashion Act?
The New York Fashion Act was introduced to New York State Senate on 27 January 2022 and is a result of collaboration between:
What does the New York Fashion Act propose?
The New York Fashion Act proposes that all global footwear and apparel companies with profits over $100 million doing trade within New York will be required to:
What are the consequences for companies who do not comply with the New York Fashion Act?
Companies who fail to comply with the New York Fashion Act would be given 3 months to correct their actions. Failure to comply would result in:
Why is the New York Fashion Act significant?
How is the industry responding to the New York Fashion Act?
The response from the industry has generally been very positive however as with any change, there has been some backlash. One major criticism is that the New York Fashion Act does not specify which 50% of the supply chain needs to be mapped, allowing companies to potentially map their better half. Others in the industry have voiced concern over the lack of grass roots consultation in the drafting process and are asking for a more diverse group of voices to be heard. While others are concerned that the language needs reworking to shift the focus from the negative (reporting problems) to one that is more inspiring for companies (solutions focused). However, most agree that this is a great first step and one that is desperately needed to bring about accountability within the fashion industry.
When will the New York Fashion Act be implemented?
There is great optimism that the Act will pass, however it still has a way to go. It is currently being reviewed by Senate and Assembly committees with the aim to bring it to a vote in late spring following where final approval will be sought by the NY State Attorney General. If passed, companies would be given a 12 month ramp period to map their supply chains and 18 months to set sustainability targets.
Regardless of whether the New York Fashion Act passes this spring or not, one thing is certain; sustainability in fashion is no longer an option, it's integral to modern business. This is great news for those within the industry who have been campaigning for greater social and environmental accountability. There's never been a better time to set goals and upgrade your sourcing.