This Friday (6), the Reuters website denounced Shein for publishing false statements about international certificates about working conditions in its factories. The Chinese retailer — which has prices well below the market and publishes hundreds of news on its website daily — has grown considerably in the last 18 months, accumulating 23 million followers on TikTok and Instagram.
The omitted information is required by some countries, in this case the UK, where companies selling over £36 million are required to declare what measures they are taking to combat forced labor, as required by the country’s 2015 Modern Slavery Act .
Despite the undeniable growth, the company does not disclose data on its earnings, nor is it transparent about the standards of its suppliers or the real conditions of its employees throughout the fast fashion chain’s supply chain. Shein claims that it has never been involved in child or forced labor but does not provide all the information required by British law.
The statements that are made usually accompany some contradiction — as is the case questioned by Reuters. On the “Social responsibility” page of Shein’s official website, the company declared to be in compliance with strict labor standards that were “established by international organizations, such as SA8000®”.
Sought by Reuters, Social Accountability International — a standard based on the standards of the World Organization for Standardization (ISO) and responsible for SA8000 — said that the Chinese company was not certified through its program and that it had no contact with the institution. When asked about the case, Shein erased any mention of ISO and the standard.
So far, Shein has not yet commented on the case.