Inditex, the world’s largest retailer, has denied knowledge of allegedly degrading, abusive, and illegal worker conditions in the Argentinian factories which produce its clothing. La Alameda, an Argentinian worker rights group, has accused Inditex of contracting with factories that employ children and immigrants, most of them Bolivian, and exposing workers to both cruel and criminal mistreatment.
La Alameda claims that workers were forced to work 16-hour shifts–from 7am to 11pm–without break, six days a week, and were physically barred from leaving their factories without permission. The group released a Spanish-language YouTube video last week, documenting the factory conditions.
Inditex, the parent company of popular fast fashion retailer Zara (Zara’s CEO, Amancio Ortega, joined the billionaire’s club this year) told Fibre2fashion that “Based on the limited information we have received so far, the workshops in question do not appear to have any relationship with our approved suppliers in Argentina.”
The spokesman added that Inditex has a “zero tolerance approach to any infringement of labor regulations,” and that their 60 approved suppliers in Argentina have been audited more than 300 times in the last two years.