By Jessica Kelly, Founder & CEO, THR3EFOLD
We are few days away from International Women’s Day and the fight for female empowerment has never felt so climactic. With last year’s global march for women’s rights to the #timesup and #metoo movements the energy of progress feels palpable. I wanted to take a moment in the midst of the fight to share why I’m banking on fashion to fuel this change.
Fashion is the Largest Labored Industry in the World
Starting with cotton farmers all the way to retail sales associates, 1 in 6 people work in fashion. It spreads across agriculture, science, technology, logistics, publishing, and of course retail, eCommerce, and manufacturing (to name a few).
80% of Garment Workers are Women Ages 18 - 35
Not only are the fashion offices here in New York and other major fashion cities made up of primarily women, but around the world, garment workers are predominantly women. Many a study has been done by non-profit organizations that have found when you support a woman, the money is poured back into her children, their future, and the wellbeing of the community. Women multiply the opportunity they are given.
We All Wear Clothes
Everyone, no matter income or status, consumes fashion. This means that even if you aren’t the 1 in 6 people working in fashion, you are still supporting this massive machine like it or not with its massive global footprint. So take note when you are shopping that your dollar is voting for something, and you have the power to be vocal to fashion brands about your values and how they treat their employees.
I wholeheartedly believe fashion is positioned as the one industry perfectly positioned to advocate for women’s right around the world because these 3 factors, combined and utilized correctly, means fashion is the largest female employer around the world, including areas where employment opportunity is quite bleak. These women in turn are giving children and communities the best future possible. It’s a ripple effect and I’m betting the house on it.
If you want to do something for women’s rights this week, apply today to be connected to one of our factories that is creating opportunity for women and making a difference through fashion around the world.