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Textile sector 'rife' with exploitation and underpayment

British clothing manufacturers have been forced to pay almost £90,000 to employees for non-payment of the minimum wage.
An HM Revenue & Customs investigation found that over a six-year period 126 garment workers were paid wage arrears.
MP Mary Creagh, who reviewed the HMRC data, said it showed exploitation in the industry was still "rife".
HMRC has 14 ongoing investigations, and it found underpayment in one in every four inspections.
"This [exploitation] must stop," said Ms Creagh, chairwoman of the Environmental Audit Committee. "We need government action to end these 19th century practices in 21st century Britain.
"It has been 20 years since the introduction of the minimum wage but in our inquiry we heard that underpayment is rife and goes hand-in-hand with a culture of fear and intimidation in the UK's textile industry."
The committee has been looking into the sustainability of the fashion industry.
In October, it warned that fast fashion is damaging the planet, and in November MPs quizzed retail executives on how firms could justify selling clothes for £5 or less.
According to Adam Mansell, chief executive of the UK Fashion and Textile Association (UKFTA), retailers have long been aware that problems exist with exploitation of workers in Britain, but the problems are numerous and difficult to solve.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-46992499
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