I have a problem. I can never buy a KitKat bar again. (Cue desperate sobs.) I also have to walk away from Mr. Goodbar, M&M’s, and Dove Chocolates. I have seen something that I can never, ever unsee, and now I’m at a crossroads.
Now honestly, none of those are good for me. I probably shouldn’t be eating all the sugary junk anyway. But I’m not talking health… I’m talking about ethics.
Free2work.org is a website (and now an app) that helps to expose to the general public the policies and ethical practices of major corporations. Free2work is affiliated with Not for Sale, an organization dedicated to raising awareness of human trafficking. The website “grades” brands ranging from apparel (Gap, Forever 21, Faded Glory, and George are some notable ones) to foods, beverages, and even electronics (check out their assessment of Apple if you dare.) Each grade takes into account the brand’s ethical manufacturing policies, involvement in forced and/or child labor, worker rights and wages, and accountability.
The major problem with this resource is that once you’ve seen their reports, you can’t ever unsee them. Every product with a failing grade is one more thing I can’t purchase with a clear conscience. So when I say to read at your own risk, please understand me: the biggest challenge is learning to cope without some of your favorite products.
Now comes the exciting part: finding alternative ways to live. I’m about to kick consumerism in the butt (in my own life, anyway), and I hope to raise some awareness about this very serious issue along with way.