University of Texas
2:08 pm
Thu July 19, 2012

Worker Rights Consortium to Monitor UT Apparel Factories

The University of Texas at Austin is joining the Worker Rights Consortium. The WRC will monitor working conditions of factories that make UT apparel.

The move comes after recent protests by student activists who denounced conditions in these factories and called for closer monitoring.

Tara Doolittle is a spokesperson for UT. She says joining the consortium can offer consumers peace of mind about where UT products come from.

"We are certainly concerned about the working conditions of the folks who make the apparel that bears our name — and we now have two agencies helping us make sure those conditions are what they should be," said Doolittle.

UT will maintain its current membership with the Fair Labor Association, which, like the WRC, monitors factories but does not interview employees about conditions outside of the workplace.*

*Correction: FLA does interview workers during investigations. In fact, the interviews of hundreds of workers at some factories in China helped expose several problems.

Joining with the WRC will cost the university $50,000.