Shein vs Forced labor

One may find the struggle in keeping up with the latest fashion trends on a tight budget, a clothing business; Shein has attracted millions of customers globally in recent years due to their inexpensive fashionable apparel and ability to stay up with the latest fashion trends at a reasonable cost. Though the billion-dollar corporation continues to effectively produce fashionable apparel, it has made recent headlines that the billion-dollar corporation is being accused of violating labor laws. Several social media networks, including Tiktok, Instagram, and Facebook, have found that Shein conducts unethical business practices. In June 2022, videos were spreading on numerous social media platforms in which customers discovered secret messages written on clothing by the manufacturing facility, expressing their need for help. This has sparked outrage, leading shoppers to believe that the sole purpose of their low-cost merchandise is due to the numerous violations of labor laws, this unique blend of art and crime has grasped the attention of consumers worldwide.

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Marian

26 thoughts on “Shein vs Forced labor

  1. Fast fashion, notably Shein, has impacted and exploited society in various aspects. First, such massive corporations focusing on the low cost of sold products (a result of labour violations), exploit audiences that cannot afford alternative brands. Second, they exploit the societal norm of obsolescence. Third, they violate labour laws by extremely low wages and no wages at all to their employees. Lastly, they are ignorant of the environmental impacts they have resulting from massive amounts of excess clothing disposed of as waste.
    While shopping at such low prices is possible from labour law violations, the continual purchase by customers is furthering their culture of inequity to their workers and normalises this culture on a far-reaching international scale. Other corporations may deem this as a negligent violation in the eyes of consumers and may use this practice further for their financial benefit.
    Although I do not shop at Shein, I do find myself shopping at other brands that are considered fast fashion. While the company is to blame, consumers are also fuelling their continued corruption. We must push for equitable and labour-positive companies to outcompete current companies.

  2. It’s sad that big companies still abuse labor laws to profit. I think problems like these shouldn’t arise anymore in this day and age and this should be stopped immediately and I honestly don’t even know how they have managed to avoid justice for so long.

  3. This is definitely sad about Shien and sad how we are contributing to these workers being exploited. It’s sad to take advantage of people for material items at the end of the day. I think this is something that should be even more talked about so that we can change this and not even have these types of problems anymore so we can start advancing this part of the world too. There needs to be something done

  4. Shein amongst other fast fashion sites are overworking and exploiting their workers. The conditions in a lot of these factories are horrible and unsafe. These workers are having to work long hours everyday and being paid below minimum wage. This is being seen all over the world even in the United States, it just isn’t talked about as much as it should be.

  5. I agree with your points about the dangers of Shein. I believe the rise of e-commerce has made it easier than ever to purchase clothing without even having to leave your bed. Personally, I have fallen victim to the lure of online shopping many times and am often influenced by the ever-changing trends that we are fed via social media. I think that social media consumes so much of our lives now adays, and now the marketplace consumes social media. I myself have purchased from Shein several times, despite being reluctant due to their reputation, and the quality is just as you would expect from a company who treats their workers (excuse my language) like shit. If true, I think that it is extremely interesting and ironic that employees at the Shein manufacturing facility have tried to send S.O.S. messages via social media platforms because we are freaking out online over these poor workers while still engaging in online shopping. I think that this is a topic that often flies under the radar in global news because so many people are allowing it to continue by being patrons to these shady companies simply because it is cheap and trendy. How much longer can we claim to care about the wellbeing of these people while still engaging in the sole act that perpetuates it. If people simply chose to think less about the personal gratification they received from getting a new item of clothing and more about the actions that were taken for that item to be created then people would make less transactions.

  6. I think that this is an extremely important topic to discuss because we are currently in a period where consumerism is at it’s peak even. I believe the rise of e-commerce has made it easier than ever to purchase clothing without even having to leave your bed. Personally, I have fallen victim to the lure of online shopping many times and am often influenced by the ever-changing trends that we are fed via social media. I think that social media consumes so much of our lives now adays, and now the marketplace consumes social media. I myself have purchased from Shein several times, despite being reluctant due to their reputation, and the quality is just as you would expect from a company who treats their workers (excuse my language) like shit. If true, I think that it is extremely interesting and ironic that employees at the Shein manufacturing facility have tried to send S.O.S. messages via social media platforms because we are freaking out online over these poor workers while still engaging in online shopping. I think that this is a topic that often flies under the radar in global news because so many people are allowing it to continue by being patrons to these shady companies simply because it is cheap and trendy. How much longer can we claim to care about the wellbeing of these people while still engaging in the sole act that perpetuates it. If people simply chose to think less about the personal gratification they received from getting a new item of clothing and more about the actions that were taken for that item to be created then people would make less transactions.

  7. I have seen some TikToks that have shown these hidden messages from workers at Shein and it’s quite terrifying. I bought from Shein once, but after hearing about the violations of labor laws, I don’t have is as an option for me to shop from anymore. The reason it’s so popular is due to the extremely low prices and trendy designs. However, the violations should definitely be looked into and taken seriously.

  8. I used to buy clothes from Shein often, until I was made aware of these messages people were finding. I feel like this problem has been known for quite some time and I just can’t help but to question why there has been nothing done about it. Are there just not sufficient laws in these countries to prevent this? Or is this just a massive problem that is simply being ignored?

  9. Shein is just one example of a company contributing to the fast fashion industry crisis that has contributed to extreme environmental decline and that exploits workers from low income countries who have no other work options. The workers are paid a small fraction of the sale price, which is kept low due to the ability to cheaply produce low-quality goods. Fast fashion has increased fashion trend cycles, leading to a feedback loop of faster and faster manufacturing, keeping workers in horrible conditions that not only pay little, but often lead to disease due to toxin exposure. It is important to keep information on fast fashion exploitation in circulation in the media in order to work to stop its dominance.

  10. I have stumbled across the Shein website a handful of times, but have never gone out of my way to purchase anything. As an avid money saver, I understand why people are still so inclined to shop from this store. For some people, you really cannot beat their deals. I have read a lot of the rumors behind this store and that is what has stopped me from shopping here (that and it also feeding into fast fashion). It is really scary to think that there is a possibility that there are children being exploited and abused for their labor. I think the mere speculation that there are potential violations of labor laws should be more than enough to open up an investigation that not only puts Shein sales on hold, but also does an extensive and thorough investigation on working conditions.

  11. The fashion industry is something that I, like many others, have a great deal of moral turmoil surrounding. As noted in the article, Shein remains popular because it maintains incredibly low and affordable prices. It is disheartening and devastating to realize that this is why. Despite these revelations coming to light, people seem to continually return to this and other fast fashion affordable brands eventually. Many people, myself included, will hear about this news and swear off the brand in questions. However, when we then need to buy new clothes and make the effort to purchase from humane and sustainable brands we find that these items are far more expensive than the alternative. They are seemingly marked up beyond reason, and force many to go back to these unsustainable brands as a result. I believe that if society truly wants to kill fast fashion and forced labor, we need to make the cost of humane and sustainable clothes more reasonable, or alternatively increase wages to reflect the costs of such necessities.

  12. I have used Shein for many times, and I have a good feeling about it. Every time, I am attracted by the beautiful page design and low price. But I didn’t expect such a problem to arise. While Shein’s ability to offer affordable and trendy clothing has garnered them a vast customer base, it is crucial to question the true cost of these products. Exploitation of labor should never be justified or overlooked in the pursuit of fashionable apparel. I’m glad that we social media is a powerful tool to amplify these issues and hold companies accountable for their actions. By raising awareness and making informed choices, we can contribute to a fashion industry that is both stylish and ethical.

  13. I have used Shein for many times, and I have a good feeling about it. Every time, I am attracted by the beautiful page design and low price. But I didn’t expect such a problem to arise. While Shein’s ability to offer affordable and trendy clothing has garnered them a vast customer base, it is crucial to question the true cost of these products. Exploitation of labor should never be justified or overlooked in the pursuit of fashionable apparel. I’m glad that social media is a powerful tool to amplify these issues and hold companies accountable for their actions. By raising awareness and making informed choices, we can contribute to a fashion industry that is both stylish and ethical.

  14. I have used Shein for many times, and I have a good feeling about it. Every time, I am attracted by the beautiful page design and low price. But I didn’t expect such a problem to arise. While Shein’s ability to offer affordable and trendy clothing has garnered them a vast customer base, it is crucial to question the true cost of these products. Exploitation of labor should never be justified or overlooked in the pursuit of fashionable apparel. I’m glad that we have a powerful tool to amplify these issues and hold companies accountable for their actions. By raising awareness and making informed choices, we can contribute to a fashion industry that is both stylish and ethical.

  15. I have used Shein for many times, and I have a good feeling about it. Every time, I am attracted by the beautiful page design and low price. But I didn’t expect such a problem to arise. While Shein’s ability to offer affordable and trendy clothing has garnered them a vast customer base, it is crucial to question the true cost of these products. Exploitation of labor should never be justified or overlooked in the pursuit of fashionable apparel. And I’m gald that social media is a powerful tool to amplify these issues and hold companies accountable for their actions. By raising awareness and making informed choices, we can contribute to a fashion industry that is both stylish and ethical.

  16. Although labor exploitation is unjustifiable, we must also think about the socioeconomic status of the consumers. From my research, sustainable fashion brands tend to be expensive which makes it difficult for economically disadvantaged individuals to shop there. Even with second-hand fashion promoting sustainability, it seems kind of unfair to expect those who are financially struggling to shop second hand knowing that those clothing items may wear out faster due to their prior usage while wealthier/well-off individuals are able to purchase NEW items whenever and wherever. As others mentioned in previous comments, fashion is a form of art expression so is it fair for ONLY wealthier individuals to be able to express themselves through fashion because of their access/privilege? In no way am I supporting Shein and other famous fast fashion brands like Zara, Forever 21, UNIQLO, etc. in their mass production of fast fashion because not only is it dangerous and harmful for their employees but to the world as a whole, however, I am respectfully proposing a different perspective from the consumers of fast fashion. I believe further investigations should be done for the companies that produce fast fashion ASAP to ensure employees are safe and protected and hopefully.

  17. I have seen so many people post about Shein and talked to so many people that wear their clothing. I feel as if people only buy it because it’s so cheap, usually the people I’ve talked to that wear Shein tend to know how unethical their working conditions are but still support them. I think especially as a female college student that’s trying to fit in, we tend to direct ourselves to the fashionable clothing items that are trendy at the moment but don’t want to pay a lot of money for such articles of clothing, instead, we result to these fast fashion companies. It is been the norm to shop there but there have been other clothing websites that support fast fashion and these unethical working conditions for their employees. it is not just. We need to stop idealizing these ideas and stop consumers from purchasing from such locations but can that really be done in this economy?

  18. After seeing the tiktoks of shein employees and especially the notes on tags it’s honestly really scary and concerning. We see it and hear about it but we haven’t seen it so it’s very shocking when you see the signs of child labor going on, especially with shein still in business and who knows if anything was done about the child labor.

  19. I had not seen the videos of Shien employees asking for help, as I don’t have TikTok. I was shocked to see that there were several individuals who were experiencing the same message on their tags. With this happening last year, I am very surprised to see Shien is still up and running, profiting from many individuals throughout the world. I feel as if this incident was shoved under the carpet, to be ignored and forgotten. I will definitely be updating anyone that may be ordering from them still, as some may not have the awareness to it.

  20. It’s difficult to think about the issues of exploiting labor within the fashion industry. The clothes that we buy have a part of ourselves within it and express something about our own identity. It’s troubling to realize that most clothes, even the expensive brands, are probably created with underpaid labor. From the consumer’s perspective, it’s difficult to find something to do about it. Do we stop buying clothes from brands that resonate with our identity? I’m sure for most people, hurting other people is something that is against their identity. It should be an easy decision to be more mindful of your own purchasing decisions.

  21. I believe that we should not have this many brands creating fashion that steals from other brands and sells them for a cheaper price. This company does not pay workers, therefore, I believe that we should block website access. I don’t think a lot of us are aware of what’s going on.

  22. Although not completely new information, it never gets less shocking to learn that at this point in time we are still having large corporations abuse their workers. It is something that is extremely looked down upon, yet I can’t help but wonder why they are still in business? It amazes me how quick we are to cancel someone for saying the wrong thing; we literally can destroy their careers through social media and exile them from influence. But when it comes to taking a position against child labor, why aren’t we as quick then? Is it justifiable because we want cheap clothes more than justice for these kids?
    I have personally never shopped at Shein, however I’m sure that many other corporations have been guilty of doing the same and I still have been a customer there. Just because we haven’t heard about other brands we buy using child labor, then we shouldn’t feel guilty?

  23. It’s important to be aware of the ethical implications of the companies we choose to support, and Shein’s recent labor law violations are concerning. As consumers, we should educate ourselves on the practices of the companies we buy from and make informed decisions about where we choose to spend our money. Overall a great read, and very insightful!

  24. Shein is just one case of fast fashion and a company violating labor laws. They are also extremely terrible for the environment in addition to just the sheer amount of clothing they produce and the wide amount of clothing they offer. Other brands include Zara and H&M however Shein gained such immense popularity in the last few years. A trend that has taken off online is showing off massive Shein hauls which has also prompted others to buy massive amounts of shein clothes. These trends just perpetuate these environmental and labor issues.

  25. I have also seen the dangerous work environment that is created in order to accomplish the massive load of orders the company receives. It is hard to think about this because on one hand it is brining affordable fashion to those who may not have means to afford high end products, but is it worth it at the cost of peoples livelihood? Additionally, these conditions are only furthered by people who over shop on the app and order way more than they need, further exploiting these employees.

  26. I have seen those tiktoks where people find messages in their clothes and it is really scary and eye opening. We know these problems are going on but because we dont see it directly, we don’t think twice. But I think when people are finding secret messages asking for help, one can only imagine the atrocities going on in those factories.

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