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HanesBrands Supports Women Rescued From Human Trafficking

July 31, 2019
The company is working with Free The Girls program which helps women buy land, house their families, attend universities and start or expand businesses.

HanesBrands, a $6.5 billion manufacturer ofinnerwear and activewear apparel that employs 68,000 globally, announced on July 25 that it hasjoined forces with the nonprofit group Free the Girls to help women rescued from human trafficking re-establish their lives.

The company’s more than 200 retail stores in the United States and Puerto Rico, which operate under the HaneBrands, Hanes, Maidenform and L’eggs-Hanes-Bali-Playtex nameplates, are accepting new and gently used bras to be donated to Free The Girls. Donated bras are used by Free The Girls to help human trafficking survivors in Mozambique, El Salvador and Costa Rica establish secondhand apparel resale businesses to earn sustainable incomes.

 “We are pleased to put the power of our retail operations behind this visionary organization to raise awareness of this important issue and provide an opportunity for the millions of people who visit our stores each year to take part in addressing the needs of survivors,” said Missy Sage, the company’s vice president of retail store operations. 

Free The Girls is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization was founded in 2010 to help women rescued from human trafficking reintegrate into their communities. The organization provides opportunities for survivors to make a safe and sustainable income selling donated bras in the second-hand apparel market and offers needed support services to help these women achieve their dreams.

Free The Girls provides survivors with initial bra inventories at no cost, along with free financial planning, budgeting, inventory management and other critical support services to assist the women as they start their businesses. The organization also provides and low-cost inventory replenishment once businesses are up and running.

“Why bras is typically everyone’s first question and the answer is very simple,” Skiera-Vaughn noted. “In many developing nations, bras are sought-after apparel that command top dollar. By selling bras, a survivor is transformed into an entrepreneur, which provides a sense of direction and the economic freedom to support herself and her family.”

Participants in the Free The Girls program have used proceeds from their businesses to buy land, house their families, attend universities and expand their businesses – or start new ones. Courtney Skiera-Vaughn, executive director of the nonprofit. also reports that 100% of the women in the program have enrolled their children in school.

About the Author

EHS Today Staff

EHS Today's editorial staff includes:

Dave Blanchard, Editor-in-Chief: During his career Dave has led the editorial management of many of Endeavor Business Media's best-known brands, including IndustryWeekEHS Today, Material Handling & LogisticsLogistics Today, Supply Chain Technology News, and Business Finance. In addition, he serves as senior content director of the annual Safety Leadership Conference. With over 30 years of B2B media experience, Dave literally wrote the book on supply chain management, Supply Chain Management Best Practices (John Wiley & Sons, 2021), which has been translated into several languages and is currently in its third edition. He is a frequent speaker and moderator at major trade shows and conferences, and has won numerous awards for writing and editing. He is a voting member of the jury of the Logistics Hall of Fame, and is a graduate of Northern Illinois University.

Adrienne Selko, Senior Editor: In addition to her roles with EHS Today and the Safety Leadership Conference, Adrienne is also a senior editor at IndustryWeek and has written about many topics, with her current focus on workforce development strategies. She is also a senior editor at Material Handling & Logistics. Previously she was in corporate communications at a medical manufacturing company as well as a large regional bank. She is the author of Do I Have to Wear Garlic Around My Neck?, which made the Cleveland Plain Dealer's best sellers list.

Nicole Stempak, Managing Editor:  Nicole Stempak is managing editor of EHS Today and conference content manager of the Safety Leadership Conference.

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