By Brittany Paril, Student at the Fashion Institute of Technology (Advertising & MarketingCommunications ’12)
Photo Credit: Nora Daly.
On Wednesday, March 23rd, two days prior to the centennial anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, an event entitled Not One More Fire! was held at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. The event aimed to educate, motivate and cultivate the minds of attendees in regards to the improvement of today’s sweatshops and their hazardous working conditions.
The event featured a panel of experts that discussed some cutting edge initiatives to humanize global garment industry and promote local industry. This panel included Kalpona Akter, Executive Director of Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity and former child garment worker; Mitch Cahn, Unionwear President; and Judy Gearhart, Executive Director of International Labor Rights Forum. The key speaker was John Liu, New York City Comptroller.
Petitions were passed around throughout the event in the hope of acquiring better working conditions for garment industry laborers. The event finished with a fashion show produced and performed by FIT students. Garments were produced and donated for the show by the FIT Fashion Design Club and modeled by students. The show incorporated a narration that illustrated a comparison of factory statistics from today’s society and working conditions 100 years ago.
This Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire memorial event was the fifth of five panels to occur at FIT this month. These events have shown that although the garment industry has come a long way since the catastrophe of March 25, 1911, there is still much to be improved upon.