Less than six months after being accused of environmental crimes by Greenpeace, Zara now face slavery allegations.
Global fashion brand, Zara, is being investigated following allegations of slave labour in South America.
A local workers’ rights group in Argentina, alerted authorities to the “degrading” sweatshop conditions faced by the mostly Bolivian workforce. As well as keeping workers under lock and key, being forced to work up to 16 hours a day for six hours a week, there are also accusations of the use of child labour.
Talking to the Telegraph, Juan Gomez Centurion, who heads up the health and safety watchdog which raided the factories, said: “We found men and children who lived in places where they worked. They were not registered and they were living in terrible conditions. They had no official documents and were held against their will, they were not allowed to leave their workplaces without permission.”
In response, Zara have issued the following statement:
“We are surprised by the allegations. Based on the limited information we have received so far, the workshops in question do not appear to have any relationship with our approved suppliers in Argentina.
“We are keen to work with La Alameda to understand the substance of their allegations, but we have received no contact from them regarding these claims, nor have we had any contact or complaint from the Argentinian authorities.”