Statement by Ethical Clothing Australia re: 1.2 million face mask order by Vic Gov

Ethical Clothing Australia

Ethical Clothing Australia (ECA) welcomes Premier Dan Andrews’ announcement today that the Victorian Government is ordering 1.2 million face masks from six ECA accredited manufacturers.

The ECA accredited businesses awarded this work are ADA (Australian Defence Force Apparel), Aquaterro, Bluegum, Nobody Denim, Style Print and The Ark THREAD Group.

Today’s announcement is important because it secures the supply of important community health face masks and it recognises the role that our local Textile, Clothing and Footwear (TCF) industry can perform. It provides a powerful economic recovery for local manufacturers, and by using accredited businesses it ensures the use of ethical supply chains.

“It is important now more than ever that we support our locally made, ethically accredited businesses and the talented garment workers behind the scenes,” said Angela Bell, National Manager, Ethical Clothing Australia,

“Major purchase orders like this from government give certainty to local manufacturers and their employees during these difficult times.”

The Premier’s announcement today acknowledges the true value of a robust, strong and adaptable TCF industry, and underlines the importance of procurement policies that recognise local producers.

When COVID-19 first hit, the fact that Australia was heavily reliant on overseas supply chains in the first instance to respond to PPE needs presented a significant risk.

The detrimental impact of COVID-19 on the local domestic fashion brands and manufacturers was immediate with store closures and the loss of production orders and these businesses have been doing it tough as uncertainty surrounds their future remains.

The manufacturers that work with ECA are committed to local, ethical manufacturing despite moves by many of their competitors to move 100% of their production offshore. Through this local production, these businesses are providing quality, local jobs and providing work to other businesses associated with the industry.

ECA’s accreditation is focused on ensuring that local TCF workers are being paid appropriately, receiving all their legal minimum entitlements and working in safe conditions throughout the entire supply chain. As manufacturing supply chains can be complex, we work alongside Australian businesses to ensure their legal obligations are met.

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