The textile sector is of great economic importance, especially for countries in the Global South. Due to precarious working conditions in many places and the use of potentially hazardous substances in industrial production, human rights protection is of particular relevance. Abuses in the implementation of social, environmental and human rights standards are still widespread in many production countries. Child labor, inadequate occupational health and safety, excessively long working hours, wages that are too low and unequal in various dimensions, restricted rights of assembly, lack of chemical and waste management, and non-existent wastewater treatment plants pose serious threats to workers and the environment. Women are particularly affected. They make up the majority of textile workers and are often additionally exposed to gender-based violence. The current Corona pandemic further exacerbates existing challenges.
Other points of contact with the Agenda 2030 are the sustainable extraction and use of resources (environmental protection, reduction of greenhouse gases, recycling, circular economy).
In line with the Agenda 2030, the textile sector can thus make important contributions to the achievement of the Agenda 2030 and the SDGs and help to link the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainability. Examples include jobs and income prospects (SDG 1), good health and well-being (SDG 3), gender equality (SDG 5), environmentally sustainable wastewater management and the avoidance of toxic chemicals (SDG 6), decent work (SDG 8), or sustainable production and consumption patterns (SDG12).
The Agenda 2030 calls for "leaving no one behind" (LNOB) on the path to sustainable development, i.e. for special attention to be paid to the needs of vulnerable and marginalized population groups in sustainable development. Particularly disadvantaged population groups are especially affected by the grievances described above.