hide message

Welcome to the Resource Centre

We make it our mission to work with advocates in civil society, business and government to address inequalities of power, seek remedy for abuse, and ensure protection of people and planet.

Both companies and impacted communities thank us for the resources and support we provide.

This is only possible because of your support. Please make a donation today.

Thank you,
Phil Bloomer, Executive Director

Donate now hide message

Clean Clothes Campaign: Garment workers face forced overtime and poverty wages in Poland & Czech Republic

Get RSS feed of these results

All components of this story

Article
2 February 2016

Czech Republic - country profile

Author: Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC)

Download the full document here

Article
2 February 2016

European garment workers face forced overtime and poverty wages

Author: Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC)

The text “Made in Europe” on a label is frequently perceived as a guarantee of good working conditions in the production of garments. However, two new country researches of Clean Clothes Campaign into working conditions in Poland and the Czech Republic show that workers in the garment industry in the European Union get poverty wages and are confronted with forced overtime which sometimes goes unpaid.

Poland and the Czech Republic compete in the clothing production business with the claim that their production is of high quality. Beyond this claim however another story of low wages can be found. Production sites in Poland and the Czech Republic produce for high-price brands, but workers just earn the legal minimum wage or less. In 2015 the net minimum wage in Poland was € 312, in the Czech Republic € 390. Workers producing for Calvin Klein, Schießer, Hugo Boss reported to the Clean Clothes Campaign that they would need up to three times this amount to lead a decent live. At the same time some workers reported that they can only reach the legal minimum wage after working overtime hours. While this is a violation of the law, the denial of a living wage amounts to a violation of workers' human right and dignity.

Very little of the profits made in the garment industry trickle down to the workers: “Was it the lack of orders that was the problem? No! We were up to our eyes in work, just as long as we worked without leave, for the lowest wage, did overtime and kept quiet. This hard work made someone very well-off”, says a Polish worker.

In addition to low wages, workers report on forced and unpaid overtime and a work environment that harms the health of workers. The researchers stress that the state of pay in the clothing industry has a lot to do with the fact that most workers are women.

 

Download the full document here

Article
2 February 2016

Poland - country profile

Author: Clean Clothes Campaign

Download the full document here