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Leigh Day employment lawyer helps BBC Panorama team research for Boohoo’s Broken Promises investigation

Working practices in the fast-fashion industry are under scrutiny once more following a BBC Panorama undercover investigation at the Manchester base of clothing retailer Boohoo.

Posted on 06 November 2023

The BBC team reports that an undercover reporter at the company's headquarters witnessed evidence of staff pressuring suppliers to drive prices down, even after deals had been agreed.

The team reports its story here and the 29-minute BBC iPlayer episode describing the practices at Boohoo can be seen here.

Leigh Employment team senior associate solicitor Liana Wood helped the BBC Panorama production team with its research for its story.

Liana helped the team understand how ethical supply chains should work and what good employment practices in the fashion industry should look like as well as discussing the implications of their findings at the Leicester factory.

The latest investigation at working practices at Boohoo comes three years after the company pledged to improve the experiences of its workers back in 2020 with Agenda for Change. The BBC reports that the programme included promising to pay its suppliers a fair price for garments, with realistic timescales.

The undercover journalist who worked as an administrative assistant at the Boohoo Manchester headquarters reported about whether those pledges appeared to have been fulfilled.

Liana Wood said:

“Workers in the fashion industry supply chain can be particularly vulnerable to exploitation. The factories are responsible for paying and treating their workers properly. Boohoo must also bear responsibility for the way workers in their supply chains are treated, especially given their awareness of the issues following the investigation in 2020.

“Workers in the Leicester factory have rights under UK employment law. Anyone who needs guidance about those rights can seek legal help.”

Liana Wood
Employment Modern Slavery

Liana Wood

Liana Wood is a senior associate solicitor in the employment department.

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