H&M signed an agreement to stop sexual violence and harassment against women after the murder of an employee in 2021.
Jeyasre Kathiravel, a worker at H&M’s Natchi Apparel Factory in Kaithian Kottai, Tamil Nadu, was found dead last January.
According to The Guardian’s police reports, her supervisor confessed her to her murder. She is currently being tried. According to The Guardian, Kathiravel was subject to months of harassment on the factory floor prior to her death.
H&M stated in a statement that the agreement was signed by the group to collaborate with other stakeholders to address gender-based violence, sexual harassment, and prevent it from happening again.
The statement added: “We expect that this agreement will contribute to an industry-wide initiative moving forward. No matter if they work for our suppliers, workers should feel secure working in our industry.”
According to reports, this agreement is only the second in its kind in the sector and the first time a retailer has taken action against gender-based violence in Asia’s retail industry.
H&M stated that it had stopped placing orders with the supplier a few months ago, but it said it was “committed” to working in collaboration to improve workers’ conditions and be part of a solution.
All factory workers, supervisors, and executives must participate in gender-based violence training. It will also ensure that women can anonymously report sexual harassment to an independent panel.