Many ‘Made in Italy’ Luxury Goods Stitched by Women Earning Less Than €2 an Hour

According to a recent New York Times investigation, thousands of “home workers” in Italy are paid around €2 per hour to make some of the world’s finest – and most expensive – garments.

Tasked with cutting and sewing for brands like Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Tod’s, the workers also get no benefits, and often work days that exceed 16 hours in length.

Per the story, there are an estimated 2,000 to 4,000 “irregular contract” (read: lawfully exploitable) home workers in the country – almost all women – and while they’re not “exposed to what most people would consider sweatshop conditions,” they are earning “what might seem close to sweatshop wages.”

Despite that, however, a number of the workers defend the work. Speaking on the condition of anonymity to preserve their employers reputation, and to keep their own job, many home workers say they enjoy the flexibility.

That, however, doesn’t let luxury brands off the hook – especially when they’re charging $1,200 for a pair of driving loafers.

You can read more about it at The New York Times.

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  • Can’t say I’m surprised the same people that burn finished goods rather than sell them at a discount would do such things.

  • probs

    This is why country of origin isn’t as great of a proxy for “ethically made” as it is often made out to be, among other reasons.