Coalition Statements & Releases
Uyghur Forced Labour Cannot Be Ruled Out in Beijing Olympics Merchandise
Jan 4, 2022
As US law banning forced labour comes into force, the International Olympic Committee refuses dialogue with Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region—and relies on China to investigate itself.
Coalition Calls Passage of Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act a Defeat for Corporations Complicit in Forced Labor and a Huge Victory for Uyghur Human Rights
Dec 16, 2021
Washington, D.C. -- On the passage of the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region released the following statement:
We applaud the House and Senate for passing the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act, despite opposition from many of the nation’s most powerful corporations.
Coalition Open Letter to Brands on Laundering Cotton Report
Nov 23, 2021
Dear apparel industry leaders:
We are writing to call your attention to the findings of a recent study published by Sheffield
Hallam University, Laundering Cotton: How Xinjiang Cotton is Obscured in International
Supply Chains. Through analysis of link-by-link supply chain connections identified through
shipping records, the research shows how cotton from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous
Region (“Uyghur Region”) circumvents certain supply standards and import bans to end up
on clothing racks around the world.
Press Release: Explosive Report Exposes Uyghur Forced Labour Connections in Global Retail Brands’ Supply Chains
Nov 17, 2021
WORLDWIDE — Following publication of a groundbreaking study by Sheffield Hallam University’s Helena Kennedy Centre for International Justice, detailing global apparel brands’ risk of ties to cotton produced with Uyghur forced labour, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region demanded corporations and governments take immediate action to ensure supply chains are free of cotton from the Uyghur Region. By analysing link-by-link supply chain connections identified through shipping records, the research shows how cotton from the Uyghur Region circumvents supply standards and import bans to end up on clothing racks around the world. The findings indicate dozens of well-known international brands are at risk of using cotton that is produced or processed by forced labour.
Coalition Open Letter to European Commission on Initiatives to Address Uyghur Forced Labour
Nov 9, 2021
Today, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region and other individual organisations sent an open letter to European Commissioners involved in European Union’s (EU) Sustainable Corporate Governance Initiative, urging them to make sure the upcoming proposal contains robust and comprehensive provisions. In addition, the letter emphasises that this initiative must be complemented by equally ambitious measures such as an import control mechanism on forced labour goods and the use of sanctions regimes.
Press Release: Global Coalition Applauds Enes Kanter for Speaking Out Against Uyghur Forced Labour
Oct 31, 2021
WASHINGTON — Today, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region, which brings together over 400 organizations around the world, commended NBA player Enes Kanter for taking a public stance in defense of the Uyghur people. Kanter, along with members of the Coalition, held a press conference on Capitol Hill on Saturday, urging Congress to pass the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act and calling on companies to cut the Uyghur Region out of their supply chains.
Coalition to End Uyghur Forced Labour Urges G20 Members to Enact Import Bans
Oct 18, 2021
WORLDWIDE — Ahead of the G20 Heads of State and Government Summit on October 30th and 31st in Rome, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region calls on world leaders to ban the import of products tainted with Uyghur forced labour, including cotton and yarn, polysilicon (used to produce solar panels), and electronics. As G20 leaders meet to discuss taking care of people and our planet, while ensuring a strong, inclusive and sustainable economic recovery, the Coalition is sounding the alarm that ending state-sponsored forced labour must be central to policies to advance the global transition to clean energy and promote climate justice.
Coalition Statement on European Commission’s Proposed Ban on Products Made with Forced Labour
Sep 21, 2021
On Tuesday, September 21, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region applauded the European Commission’s proposed import ban on products made by forced labour. The action marks a critical step in the global fight to rid supply chains of goods produced by Uyghur forced labour.
Coalition Statement on State Department’s Updated Xinjiang Supply Chain Business Advisory
July 13, 2021
Today’s Updated Xinjiang Supply Chain Business Advisory, issued by six U.S. Government departments, is an encouraging further step toward holding the Chinese Government accountable for the continued human rights abuses in the Uyghur Region. Following the June 24 White House announcement of new sanctions cracking down on forced labour in the solar industry supply chain, and after the strong June 13 statement on Uyghur forced labour made by President Biden at the G7 Summit, today’s announcement by Secretary of State Blinken sends a clear message to companies around the world: continuing to conduct business as usual in the Uyghur Region will jeopardise your market access to the United States.
Coalition Statement on the Better Cotton Initiative
May 18, 2021
Since backlash in China in late March 2021, the Better Cotton Initiative (‘BCI’) has deleted all public statements and references to its decisions to exit the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (‘Uyghur Region’). In response to BCI’s continued silence, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region is issuing this statement setting out the Coalition’s position regarding BCI, which includes in its stated mission “to make global cotton production better for the people who produce it.”
Press Release: Shocking New Report Exposes Solar Industry’s Reliance on Uyghur Forced Labour
May 14, 2021
WORLDWIDE – Today, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region released an explosive new academic report detailing the widespread use of Uyghur forced labour within the solar industry. Researchers at Sheffield Hallam University’s Helena Kennedy Centre for International Justice find that almost the entire global solar panel industry is implicated in the forced labour of Uyghurs and other Turkic and Muslim-majority peoples.
Statement: Coalition position regarding Inditex and the Uyghur forced labour crisis
April 26, 2021
In reply to several inquiries from concerned consumers and civil society, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region is issuing this statement setting out the Coalition’s position regarding Inditex – the parent company of Zara, Bershka, Pull&Bear, Massimo Dutti and other brands – and the forced labour crisis unfolding in the Uyghur Region.
Statement: Beijing 2022 Olympics stakeholders must uphold human rights standards
April 15, 2021
The Coalition to End Uyghur Forced Labour condemns the current contract between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Hengyuanxiang (HYX) Group which has ties to the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. The IOC has contracted the HYX Group for the provision of IOC uniforms for the Tokyo 2021 Summer Olympics and the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.
Press Release: Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region Warns Corporations Not to Trade their Human Rights Principles for Market Access
March 26, 2021
‘Placing profits over human rights carries a price’
WORLDWIDE — As global fashion brands face commercial retaliation in China over their statements against the use of forced Uyghur labour, the advocates leading the campaign against forced labour in the Uyghur Region are calling on companies not to trade their human rights principles to hang onto commercial advantage.
Statement: Honouring the Bravery Uyghur and Turkic Women
March 8, 2021
This International Women’s Day, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region stands in solidarity with and celebrates the bravery of Tursunay Ziawudun, Gulzire Auelhan, Sayragul Sauytbay, Qelbinur Sedik, Zumrat Dawut, Mihrigul Tursun and all other women in the Uyghur region who have told their stories of forced labour, discrimination, body policing and gender based violence at the hands of the Chinese government.
An Open Letter to the Fashion and Home-Furnishing Industries
March 2, 2021
Time is up. We, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region, call on all companies to urgently end all links to Uyghur forced labour.
Statement: US House Bill Would Effectively Block Import of Goods Produced with Uyghur Forced Labour
February 25, 2021
The atrocities unfolding in the Uyghur Region demand our urgent attention and concerted action to end it. At the very least, multinational companies should not profit from these abuses and US consumers must not be sold these goods.
Statement: Coalition Calls on IOC to Announce Human Rights Due Diligence Plan ahead of Beijing 2022 Olympics
February 3, 2021
The Coalition to End Uyghur Forced Labour joins the call for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to articulate its human rights due diligence plan this month, in accordance with the UN Guiding Principles for Business and Human Rights, for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics—one year ahead of the start of the Games.
Statement: End Uyghur Forced Labour Coalition Welcomes Public Commitments by Marks & Spencer on Uyghur Forced Labour
January 6, 2021
London, UK – Today the major British multinational retailer, Marks & Spencer, publicly announced its formal commitment to cut all ties with suppliers implicated in Uyghur forced labour and to ban any sourcing from the Uyghur Region, from cotton to finished garments.
Press Release: End Uyghur Forced Labor Coalition Demands Companies Disclose Corporate Lobbying Against the Uyghur Forced Labour Prevention Act
December 15, 2020
Today, the Coalition to End Forced Labour in the Uyghur Region (Coalition) has written to 17 leading consumer companies – adidas, Amazon, Apple, Campbell Soup, Coca-Cola, Gap, Heinz, Inditex, Kohl’s, L Brands, Nike, Nordstrom, PVH, Ross, Target, TJX and Walmart – demanding that they come clean about their stance on the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (S.3471).
Press Release: Global responsible businesses must address Uyghur rights violations in China
November 16, 2020
Human rights advocates and Uyghur groups are calling on business to keep their human rights obligations in the Uyghur Region in the foreground as they participate in this year’s UN Forum on Business and Human Rights.
Press Release: UK Parliament Calls Leading Apparel Brands to Testify on their Potential Complicity in Forced Uyghur Labour
November 4, 2020
On Thursday, 5th November the Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy Committee of the UK Parliament will hold a hearing to determine, “the extent to which business in the UK are exploiting the forced labor of Uyghurs in the Xinjiang region of China.” Companies operating in the UK were called to submit evidence including: Adidas, Amazon, BooHoo Group, Gap (Gap Inc.), H&M Group, IKEA, Marks and Spencer, Nike, Puma, Stella McCartney, The North Face (VF Corporation), The Walt Disney Company, TikTok (ByteDance), Victoria’s Secret, and Zara (Inditex). For the first time the companies are facing direct scrutiny of their supply chains.
Statement: Human rights, labour and investor organisations restate call for a Regional WRO, and press for transparency and robust enforcement
September 15, 2020
On September 14, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced five new withhold release orders (WROs) in response to China’s widespread use of forced and prison labour in the Uyghur Region. These WROs are recognition that the advocacy of Uyghur groups, human rights organizations, trade unions and investors who have documented the use of forced labour in global supply chains linked to the Uyghur Region is paying off. However, the WROs remain far short of what is necessary to change the behavior not only of Beijing but of the companies that benefit from forced labour.
Press Release: 180+ Orgs Demand Apparel Brands End Complicity in Uyghur Forced Labour
July 23, 2020
Today, 72 Uyghur rights groups are joined by over 100 civil society organisations and labour unions from around the world in calling on apparel brands and retailers to stop using forced labour in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (“Uyghur Region”), known to local people as East Turkistan, and end their complicity in the Chinese government’s human rights abuses. The groups have issued a call to action seeking brand commitments to cut all ties with suppliers implicated in forced labour and end all sourcing from the Uyghur Region, from cotton to finished garments, within twelve months.