The Transparency Pledge is an important first step, but is not the end of the story. Far more can and should be done to promote deeper and wider transparency and human rights in garment industry supply chains.
The Pledge does not attempt to define the full extent of transparency in the garment industry. It deals with a narrow yet critical part of transparency in apparel supply chains. The full range of transparency practices in the garment industry should be broader and more holistic. Several aspects —ranging from grievance redress procedures and brand efforts to mitigate or remediate human rights problems, including the effectiveness of brands’ compliance programs with respect to worker wages, hours of work, and their freedom of association— stand to benefit from greater transparency.
The Pledge does not set a ceiling, but rather a floor, on what brands should publicly report. The coalition hopes that human rights and environmental advocates, governments, companies, investors, and other stakeholders in the sector will work to deepen and broaden transparency beyond what is included in the Pledge.
Some brands have already taken steps that prove more is possible. They have published more details beyond just a factory name and address, indicating the precise number of workers in the factory, the gender breakdown of the workforce, and other details for every factory disclosed. A very small number of apparel companies have published the textile factories where fabric used in their garments is made and more information beyond the “manufacturing phase” of the supply chain.