As fashion sales fall globally, big brands leave Asia’s garment workers in limbo

The livelihoods of millions of Asian garment workers are in jeopardy after cancellations by top fashion brands, with unions, researchers and campaigners warning coronavirus could lead to a rollback of labour rights in an industry often accused of abuse.

With stores globally closed and sales falling, many Western retailers have cancelled orders or demanded discounts from suppliers in countries including Cambodia and Bangladesh, leading to many workers going without pay or being fired.

An estimated 60 million garment workers could struggle to weather the crisis unless more brands take responsibility, according to several fashion industry insiders and watchers.

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