As the World Cup gets going, it’s all kicking off against the sports brands paying poverty wages

Nike Football Boots
Support us and go ad-free

Football fever has kicked off once again, with the World Cup taking place in Russia. But the Clean Clothes Campaign is drawing people’s eyes to the unpleasant side of the sporting event.

Following a shocking new report launched on 11 June, the campaign network is highlighting the poverty wages paid to workers stitching football shirts and shoes

Most expensive World Cup in history

According to the Clean Clothes Campaign, this year’s World Cup will be the most expensive in history. It also claims that sponsorship deals from major sports brands for World Cup teams have doubled in value.

Adidas has agreed a €65m sponsorship deal with the German football team. Similarly, Nike has confirmed a €50.5m sponsorship deal with the French team.

Money not making its way to workers

But while big money is being driven into the sport, it’s not making its way to workers. Since 1995, the proportion of the cost of a pair of Nike or Adidas shoes paid to the workers who produced them has fallen [pdf, p3] by 30%. Additionally, workers in Indonesia, Cambodia and Vietnam are earning [pdf, p3] wages between 45% and 65% less than a living wage.

The Clean Clothes Campaign point out [pdf, p5] that had Nike and Adidas maintained their sponsorship spending at the same level as 2012, they could have paid all workers throughout their supply chain a living wage. Instead, money that could be used to pay workers fairly is being spent promoting their brands.

Holding brands to account

Since the World Cup started, the Clean Clothes Campaign has been holding brands to account for low pay to workers. Its been spreading the word and raising awareness through a Twitter campaign:

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Dodgy practices

The garment industry has a long history of dodgy practices. Adidas previously came under fire for failing to pay severance payments to 2,800 workers fired from in an Indonesian factory in 2012. Last year, a report found that high street brands sourced from factories in Myanmar which employed children paid as little as 13 pence an hour.

Such practices are commonplace within the industry. With so many eyes on the world of sport, the Clean Clothes Campaign is ramping up the pressure on brands to clean up their act. It’s long overdue.

Get Involved!

– Join The Canary, so we can keep holding the powerful to account.

– Support garment workers’ rights through the Clean Clothes CampaignLabour Behind the Label, and the Worker Rights Consortium.

– Read and support other independent media outlets:

Media DiversifiedNovara MediaCorporate WatchRed PepperNew InternationalistCommon SpaceMedia LensBella CaledoniaVox PoliticalEvolve PoliticsReal MediaReel NewsSTRIKE! magazineThe Bristol CableThe Meteor, The SkwawkboxSalford StarThe FerretThe Norwich RadicalopenDemocracy.

Featured image via Virtual Falcon – Wikimedia.

Support us and go ad-free

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed