Friday, December 16, 2011
Victoria's shameful secret: Luxury underwear is made from cotton picked by 'abused child slaves’
Victoria's Secret lingerie is modelled by some of the world's most beautiful and glamorous women.
Its designer products grace the shelves of top stores, proudly bearing certified organic labels.
But the billion dollar brand's sexy and sensual image is being threatened by claims that its bras, knickers and lingerie are made from cotton produced by children who are forced to work long hours for no pay.
Child labour: Clarisse Kambire, 13, (centre), collects 'fair trade' organic cotton. The lingerie retailer Victoria's Secret are believed to have used cotton farmed by children as young as ten in its products
Denied an education: Kambire, was reportedly pulled out of school by her cousin with whom she works the fields in desperately poor Burkina Faso
Far away from the glamorous catwalks of New York and London, children as young as 10 were allegedly discovered by investigators from Bloomberg News Agency working under appalling conditions.
In one tragic case a child apparently sneaked off to attend a nearby school, but her older cousin, the farmer for whom she is forced to work, hauled her home and forbade her to return to lessons.
The cotton in question is produced under the seemingly trustworthy Fair Trade programme, in desperately poor Burkina Faso, a land-locked country in West Africa, bordering Ghana, where child labour is known to be endemic.
According to the U.S. Department of Labour cotton is produced with child or forced labor in more countries than any other commodity with the exception of gold.
Burkina Faso recently ranked 181st out of 187 countries in the 2011 United Nations Human Development Index.
The Bloomberg News Agency team spent more than six weeks in the country interviewing child labourers as well as their families, neighbours and village elders.http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2074278/Victorias-Secret-Luxury-underwear-cotton-picked-abused-child-slaves.html#ixzz1gigYduZS