Though the global garment industry has always been a female-dominated industry, garment companies have started focusing on women’s empowerment only now says UK-based data analytics and consulting company GlobalData. Several companies are taking action individually and in collaboration with other members of the industry to promote female empowerment within their value chains. A worker training toolkit includes best practices for training of women and promoting gender equality in the supply chain. Care Australia and the Cotton On Group are also collaborating for a two-year project which will help increase the number of women in leadership positions within garment factories in Bangladesh. Shop Direct, Next and Varner have been working on improving the work conditions for young women in South India's fabric mills. They have been able to engage with around 9,500 women in the first phase of this scheme.
With increasing pressure on retailers and brands to ensure the ethical treatment of workers in their supply chains, there has been a focus on empowering women in their roles, allowing them to have a voice and access to better opportunities. This is starting to happen as these initiatives gather pace, and companies are also ensuring they use their collective influence to ensure these programs have a lasting impact.