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LONDON – A proposed licensing scheme for Leicester’s garment industry will be funded by the public purse and garment factories, the British Retail Consortium has told Apparel Insider. This week, 50 cross-party MPs and Peers have wrote to UK Home Secretary Priti Patel calling for greater protection for garment factory workers, including a licensing scheme for garment factories. They are joined by 40 retailers, investors and NGOs in their call for action.

However, the BRC has now confirmed that such a scheme would be run by very same enforcement agencies which – if we are to believe numerous claims – have spent several years turning a blind eye to human rights abuses in these factories. These could include the Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA), Health and Safety Executive (HSE), HMRC’s National Minimum Wage team, and the Employment Agencies Standards Inspectorate.

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