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Globalization, Sweatshops, and the Clothes We Wear

The Common Threads project, Globalization, Sweatshops, and the Clothes We Wear, is designed as a study tool for students interested in the relationship between major clothing brands and the people and places where they are produced. 

As a case study, Guatemala is presently a country with approximately 240 maquilas (factories) contracted by the major brands to produce clothing mostly for the North American market. This arrangement has profound implications for the workers in Guatemala, the owners of the maquilas and North American consumers. It also involves many related areas such as the environment, human rights, labour rights, women's issues, free mark trade agreements, globalization etc.

The relationship of these various areas is complicated and students are invited to view as many sides of the situation as possible in order to start to understand the implications of buying the clothes they do.

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  • Globalization, Sweatshops, and the Clothes We Wear Classroom Resource Globalization, Sweatshops, and the Clothes We Wear Classroom Resource classroom-resource.pdf The Common Threads Project resource package consists of high quality “classroom-ready” lesson resources for Ontario secondary school teachers. These materials help develop awareness in Ontario’s high school students of the global impact of their choices and actions, and help them make responsible choices for the sake of our collective future. The lesson resources are complete and “ready to use”, designed using specific Ontario Ministry of Education curriculum expectations. They utilize multimedia elements but are available in various formats to provide maximum flexibility.