Leveraging Time: Regulating Labor Standards in the Age of Lean Retailing
37 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2001
Date Written: April 2001
Regulating labor standards in the apparel industry has been a problem for more than a century. However, changes over the last decade in the relationships between retailers and apparel manufacturers have altered the product market forces governing the apparel industry. This paper explores how new regulatory approaches are attempting to take advantage of these changes in market forces to create greater pressure on multiple parties in the supply "channel" to monitor and enforce domestic labor standards. The paper explores new data on the performance of traditional and new regulatory approaches given these changes. It then speculates on the implications of these findings to regulating labor standards internationally as well as the application of market pressure as a regulatory tool for other venues.
Keywords: Labor standards, regulation, Fair Labor Standards Act, apparel industry, lean retailing
JEL Classification: J38, L51, L67
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation