Primark Scandal: Second Shopper Finds 'Forced Labour' Label

14/08/2014 16:45 | Updated 20 May 2015

Another Primark shopper has come forward, claiming she discovered a hand-stitched "forced labour" label sewn into a polka dot top purchased in Swansea in May 2013.

Rebecca Jones told MyDaily she initially tweeted a picture of the hand sewn label which read: "'Degrading' sweatshop conditions," to BBC News last year and had no response. She was prompted to post it again after news broke of a similar discovery - also in Swansea - last week.

"I saw and article about a label very similar to mine," she told us. "So I decided to tweet my photo to Primark."

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Rebecca felt the picture spoke for itself and didn't include a message to the retailer in her tweet.

However, Primark was quick to respond to the latest claim and tweeted: "We continue to investigate the origins of an additional label which has been found in one of our dresses."

Rebecca told MyDaily she hopes her coming forward will help raise awareness about how and where clothes are made.

"I think it is important for others come forward," she said. "So we can continue to raise awareness and hopefully make a change."

In an interview with the SWEP Rebecca's mum voiced her concerns over the label and what it meant for ethical fashion. "I was really shocked when I saw the label saying it was degrading sweatshop conditions," she said.

"I used to shop a lot at Primark but not so much now. The label has made me think about how my clothes are made.

"I have no idea who made the label or how it go it there - but it does make you think."


The high street favourite came under fire when Swansea shopper Rebecca Gallagher uncovered the words, "Forced to work exhausting hours" hand-stitched on the label of a £10 floral dress.

Rebecca Gallagher from Swansea said she was shocked to discover the apparent "cry for help" emblazoned across the label of her new purchase.

The 25-year-old has vowed never to wear her bargain find for fear it could be the result of exploitative labour.

"I was amazed when I checked for the washing instructions and spotted this label," she told the South Wales Evening Post.

"It was stitched by hand to say 'Forced to work exhausting hours' and sewn in with the other normal labels.

"To be honest I've never really thought much about how the clothes are made. But this really made me think about how we get our cheap fashion," she explained.

"I dread to think that my summer top may be made by some exhausted person toiling away for hours in some sweatshop abroad."

Rebecca claimed she called Primark after being disturbed by what she saw, but was "put on hold for 15 minutes before being cut off."

A spokesman for the cut-price high street giant said there had been "no other incidents of this kind," adding: "We would be grateful if the customer would give us the dress, so we can investigate how the additional label became attached and whether there are issues which need to be looked into."

The retailer also took to Twitter after the story went viral, writing: "We are currently investigating the origins of an additional label which has been found in one of our dresses."

However, this wasn't good enough for some and one Twitter user posted: "Yeah right @Primark investigating for real. Did u have to wait till a label exposed further what slavery goes on in those factories #primark" and another saying: "@Primark if you can afford to charge £10 for dress of course someone is being exploited. I blame your customers too."

Would this news stop you shopping for bargains in Primark? Tweets us at @MyDailyUK and tell us your thoughts.


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