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UK: Primark pulls from PR Week event following protest threats

Date: 21 Nov 2008

Scene from Primark coverage

Fashion retailer Primark has pulled a presentation it was due to make at a PR Week conference following news that campaigners were targeting the event for anti-Primark protests. The company had been intended to highlight how it had survived bad publicity when TV broadcasters highlighted child labour in its supply chain.

Campaigners 'Labour Behind the Label' and 'Blood Sweat and T-Shirts' celebrated the move, saying that they had changed the company's message from one of 'we won' to one of 'we're on the run'.

The TV programmes had shown children sewing sequins onto garments which were subsequently identified in Primark stores. The company created some controversy when it immediately delisted the suppliers concerned.

A recent poll of British shoppers suggested that the company was now regarded by those who cared as the least ethical big name retailer on the high street. However, changing behaviour in the face of economic recession has favoured heavy discounters such as Primark, and suggests that at the moment rather fewer care about the revelations of child labour than want to find cheap clothes.


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