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Fair Trade

An estimated 100 million people are enjoyed in the fashion industry and 80% of them are women. 

60% of these jobs are in developing countries. In Bangladesh and Vietnam alone, Oxfam found that less than 1% of these workers were paid a living wage. 

Putting money directly in the hands of women is a proven way to lift communities out of poverty. For every 1 women lifted above the poverty line, she brings another 7 people with her. 

We believe strongly, and have seen first hand, how providing good jobs to those in developing countries rather than just a hand out is one of the best ways to give them ownership of their lives, giving them more options if they want to further their education, send their children to better schools, or add on to their homes.

Why the fair trade model is different: "People love to say, give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he'll eat for a lifetime. What they don't say is...'what would be nice is if you gave him a fishing rod.' That's the part of the analogy that's missing. I realized I needed someone in the privileged world to come to me and say, 'okay, here's what you need and here's how it works.' Talent alone would have gotten me nowhere, I needed Andrew to give me the CD writer. People say, oh that's a handout. No I still have to work to profit by it, but I don't stand a chance without it." Trevor Noah

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Liz Alig was built on the idea of producing clothing ethically, as a way to empower those living in places around the world who typically have few opportunities. We partnering with small workshops around the world to produce our collections. They each have an emphasis on a hands on, slower way of production (where one person sews an entire garment from start to finish). Each group sources handwoven, natural or recycled textiles that are native to their region or are easily accessible in their local markets. 

Each organization we partner with is helping empower it's employees in their unique way in their corner of the world by either offering free childcare, giving scholarships to further their education, or giving incredibly generous benefits and holidays (something incredibly rare for factories in developing countries!) Liz Alig invests in these groups by designing clothing that will sell in a global market while showcasing their regions traditional textile skills. Liz Alig is a member of the Fair Trade Federation.

What is fair trade production? Fair trade is an economic and social movement that aims to provide a more equitable form of global trade especially to producers in developing countries while promoting sustainability.  One of the main goals of fair trade is to balance the payment scale in the supply chain.  Although many view fair trade as a form of charity, it is rather a way to empower low income communities with a sustainable form of income instead of feeding a cycle of poverty. Low wages and poor conditions are a reality for many people working in factories in the developing world.  In 1980, over 30% of textiles were produced in developing countries.  Today this number is 70%.  Although this is one way for these countries to enter the global market, many of its citizens only become trapped in a cycle of exploitation. Those using the fair trade model pursue producers in developing countries and low income areas to assist these communities with skills training and business opportunities to encourage their economic growth.

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