• They dress the West, but Sri Lanka’s women workers face crisis upon crisis
    Dresses

    They dress the West, but Sri Lanka’s women workers face crisis upon crisis

    The pandemic was hard enough. Now, Sri Lanka faces an economic crisis of its own making that is taking a heavy toll on low-paid female garment workers sewing clothes for wealthier women in the West. “I have never seen anything like this in my 20-year career,” said one factory owner, who employs 20 women to make vests and slips, some of whom have been on his payroll for over a decade. Now, Anthony – not his real name – says he is leaving the rag trade, hit by rolling power cuts, soaring costs for raw materials, shrinking orders and a labour shortfall: a fistful of problems for an island that…