// Factory workers in Bangladesh producing Lululemon products are reportedly called “whores” and “prostitutes”
// Factory workers are subject to physical violence and regular humiliation from managers
// Workers are reportedly are paid 9100 taka (£85) a month, which is less than one pair of Lululemon leggings
Factory workers producing Lululemon apparel are reportedly being physically and verbally abused at a Bangladeshi factory.
According to an investigation in The Guardian, young female factory workers have said they struggled to survive on meagre wages and allege that they face the regular threat of physical violence and humiliation from managers who call them “whores” and “prostitutes”.
Youngone Corporation own and run the Bangladesh factory which supplies Lululemon.
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The Guardian reported that some workers are paid 9100 taka a month – the equivalent of £85 – which is less than the price of one pair of Lululemon leggings.
Many in the factory are allegedly forced to work overtime in order to hit targets, at times feeling pressure to stick to their work stations.
One factory worker even told The Guardian that that when she left work early due to illness, she was slapped so hard by a technician that her cheeks went red.
In response to the investigation, Lululemon said it would launch an investigation in line with its code of practice.
Meanwhile, Youngone Corporation said it was committed to providing a “safe, fair and just” working environment for employees to air grievances and opinions.
A spokesperson for Lululemon said: “We take these allegations very seriously and we are committed to a full, independent investigation.
“Members of lululemon’s social responsibility and production team visited the factory in Bangladesh immediately to speak with workers and learn more.
“We will work with an independent non-profit third party to fully investigate the matter.
“While our production at this factory is extremely limited, we will ensure workers are protected from any form of abuse and are treated fairly.”
The news comes just as Lululemon launched a partnership with the UN to develop mindfulness, yoga and self-care training to more than 500 aid workers across the world.
It also follows the activewear retailer recently raising its profit guidance after reporting successful second-quarter results that topped its own forecasts and pushed shares to a record high.
Back in 2013, Lululemon faced criticism for being slow to sign the Bangladesh Safety Accord following a factory accident that killed more than 1000 people.