The reviews are in, and our 2018 Fashion for Freedom Event in New York is being heralded as a fantastic success. Scores of Free the Slaves supporters and ethical fashion advocates gathered in Manhattan for the uplifting evening.
“The Fashion for Freedom Event was a snapshot of what ethical fashion can be at its greatest,” wrote Camille Mori in her Ethical Fashion Nerd blog. “We need to keep pushing for change. Even though there was a sense that this is only the beginning and that enormous efforts still need to be made, there was excitement in the air. The room was full of a supportive community ready to take action and find ways to drive policy, consumer behavior, and industry change to protect people at every level of the supply chain.”
The event featured ethical brand pop-up stores and presentations from leaders in the ethical fashion movement.
“The fashion industry really is about women. It’s our responsibility as free women to help free our enslaved sisters,” Benita Robledo noted in her Compassion Fashion blog. “We as citizens must demand better from our government as well as our brands.”
Free the Slaves continued its Freedom Awards initiative with our first-ever Fashion for Freedom Award. The winner was Flor Molina, whose remarkable rise from fashion industry trafficking swurvivor to White House anti-trafficking adviser is a beacon of hope.
“She discussed, with heartbreaking detail, that her trafficker forced her to live in the factory and did not even allow her to shower, and how we all need to fight for the dignity of the people who manufacture our clothing,” Kellie Hayden Porter wrote in The Wholehearted Wardrobe blog.
“What [Molina’s experience] reminds us is that slavery isn’t something over there. It’s something over here,” Free the Slaves Executive Director Maurice Middleberg told the Voice of America TV crew covering the event. “As long as it exists anywhere, we run the risk of having the slave next door, the slave who’s serving us, the slave who’s working for us. And I don’t think any decent American wants to be party to that,” he said.
Our thanks to the many speakers, sponsors and volunteers who made the event such a success. It’s not too late to support our summer-long Fashion for Freedom Campaign. Visit our campaign website and shop our ethical fashion online storefront on DoneGood to find out how you can get modern slavery out of your wardrobe.