Discussion Paper 47: Learning from Crisis

12 Dec 2022

Apparel industry experts on mitigating the COVID-19 pandemic and future crises

The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on apparel and footwear workers have attracted significant interest from researchers. The focus of most studies has been to examine the immediate effect of the pandemic on suppliers and workers. This paper presents these and other results of existing research in three sections. The first summarizes national policies implemented during the first two years of the pandemic and their implications for long-term social protection in the apparel industry. Next, the paper addresses debates among apparel industry constituencies on policies for social protection, trade and human rights due diligence from an international perspective. The second section identifies changes to the sector during the pandemic and provides the context for a new generation of policy-making for the industry. The paper concludes by identifying lessons and recommending actions to advance policies for a more resilient and inclusive sector.

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