Over 70 of the world's largest retail and apparel brands have adopted policies prohibiting the use of Uzbekistan cotton but, to our knowledge, Toys "R" Us has neither addressed the issue nor released any information on its cotton sourcing practices and policies.
Urge Toys "R" Us to prohibit its suppliers from sourcing Uzbekistan cotton, helping to end the abuses of child and slave labor in the cotton supply chain and providing consumers with a quality product that is responsibly produced.
Toys "R" Us Corporation
Vice President, Investor Relations
1 Geoffrey Way
Wayne, NJ 04470
Dear Mr. Bruce Bishop,
As consumers, it is important for us to know that the products we purchase are not manufactured by the exploitation of others. Unlike 70 other major retail and apparel brands around the world, to our knowledge, Toys "R" Us has neither addressed the issue of cotton sourcing nor released a public statement asserting that the cotton used in its clothing does not enable child labor in Uzbekistan. We urge you to reconsider your company's present stance.
Uzbekistan is the third largest exporter of cotton in the world, selling over 800,000 tons of cotton every year. However, rather than using machinery to harvest cotton, the Uzbekistan government reportedly forces tens of thousands of children out of school to pick cotton in the fields every year. Supposedly, children and students are subjected to picking quotas, arduous labor and little or no pay for their work. Further, despite producing a crop valued at over $1 billion dollars, it is suspected that cotton farmers receive little of that profit as the government keeps most of the monetary rewards.
Until your company addresses this concern and publicly announces a cotton sourcing policy, I will not purchase or recommend your clothing products to others. Additionally, I intend to encourage fellow Moxy Vote users that are Toys "R" Us shareholders to penalize the board of directors if this issue is not addressed to our satisfaction.
Please keep us posted on your efforts through Moxy Vote.