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WELCOME TO THE ARCHIVE (1994-2014) OF THE MAQUILA SOLIDARITY NETWORK. For current information on our ongoing work on the living wage, women's labour rights, freedom of association, corporate accountability and Bangladesh fire and safety, please visit our new website, launched in October, 2015:


January 29, 2007

Levi Strauss drops from first to fifth place in ETAG Report Card


In response to a decision by the UK Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) to suspend Levi Strauss's membership for refusing to commit to the ETI Living Wage standard, Canada's Ethical Trading Action Group (ETAG) has reduced Levi's score in its 2006 Transparency Report Card from 1st to 5th place.

November 20, 2008

Ontario Court of Appeals clears way for collective bargaining by farm workers

A ruling by the Ontario Court of Appeals (OCA) handed down on November 17, 2008 will open the door for Ontario’s farm workers to exercise their newly found constitutional right to bargain collectively.  The Court held that the province’s Agricultural Employees Protection Act (AEPA) did not go far enough to protect farm workers’ collective bargaining rights under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and was therefore unconstitutional. Ontario was given 12 months to change its legislation to conform to the decision.

November 18, 2008

Russell factory closed to eliminate union, says WRC report

The Worker Rights Consortium (WRC) has released findings from its investigation into allegations of freedom of association violations surrounding Russell Athletics’ planned closure of its Jerzees de Honduras plant. Among the findings were "that anti-union animus was a significant factor in the company’s decision to close the plant," and that threats, harassment, and interference with collective representation were used at the plant to prevent workers from exercising their right to freedom of association.

November 9, 2008

Antonio Villalba: union organizer, leader, and life-long fighter for worker rights

Last month, MSN received the sad news of the death of our friend Antonio Villalba. Antonio was a union organizer, an important leader of Mexico's Authentic Labour Front (FAT), and a life-long fighter for the rights of workers in Mexico and internationally. Until the very end of his long struggle against cancer, Antonio continued to offer thoughtful strategic advice to his union membership, never losing his wonderful wry sense of humour.

October 10, 2008

Triumph International still resisting reinstating fired union president

Triumph worker on strikeThai workers end six week strike Between July 30 and September 13 more than 2,000 workers at the Thai subsidiary of underwear giant Triumph International went on strike to demand reinstatement of their union president, Ms. Jitra Kotchadej. Ms. Kotchadej was dismissed on July 29 in relation to her appearance during her private time in a national television debate wearing a t-shirt with the text ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime.’ The t-shirt refers to the right of people not to stand when the royal anthem is played and the abuse of lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition.

March 10, 2008

No Sweat Victory at York University

york T-shirtOn Saturday March 8th, York University President Mamdouh Shoukri made a commitment to introduce a No Sweat licensing policy at the university by April. This promise came in response to a 45 hour sit-in by York students, members of the Sustainable Purchasing Coalition (SPC), a student group lobbying to reform York purchasing policy to more sustainable standards. If this pledge goes through as promised, York will bring the number of Canadian Universities with No Sweat policies to 17.

January 10, 2008

MSN supporters identify priorities for the new year


Last year our staff and our network fought on many fronts to hold international apparel brands accountable for the labour rights abuses in their supply chains. Some companies responded positively, and some of them lagged behind - severely. But all of them could use improvement. So we asked for your help in prioritizing three top priorities for the apparel industry in 2008.

November 2, 2007

MSN Statement on Discovery of Child Labour in Gap Subcontract Factory

On October 28, a UK newspaper published an exposé on child labour in India, revealing that clothes bearing the GapKids label were being made by children as young as 10 years old. Gap is acting on the matter – but will its actions prevent future violations?

September 28, 2007

Arrest warrants issued for staff of Clean Clothes Campaign

Support neededIn an attempt to silence critics of the India-based manufacturer Fibres and Fabrics International, the Indian court issued arrest warrants against seven staff members of the Clean Clothes Campaign and the India Committee of the Netherlands. The Clean Clothes Campaign is seeking international support on the matter.

September 20, 2007

Violent Attacks Continue in in Cavite Export Processing Zone, Philippines

Despite growing pressure on the Philippine government to put a stop to the violence and entra-judicial killings of trade unionists and human rights activists, attacks continue. It is believed that the attacks are sanctioned by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) and its police force.