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US industry calls for appointment of fashion czar


Clothing brands, experts and organisations in the US are hoping a fashion czar is appointed. Since there is a lack of accountability among brands that claim to be sustainable, as well as varying definitions about what is or isn’t sustainable, such a political appointee is expected to coordinate and advocate for policy in the fashion industry, much like John Kerry does for international climate efforts. So the spotlight will be on not just the clothes but also the practices and policies of the industry.

Even though the United States is no longer where most of the world’s clothes are made, it is the base of some of the world’s largest fashion brands and is the breeding ground for the next wave of fashion labels with innovative new business models and materials. And American consumers have huge spending power. On the production end, more than 1.8 million Americans are employed by the fashion industry, although more than 95 per cent of clothing sold in the US is imported.

Those who have signed the open letter have called for action on the federal level to address environmental, labor, health and domestic production issues in the fashion industry. Signees include companies that have fashioned their approach around sustainability and ethical practices.