To our whole GOEX Community –
Thank you for the outpouring of kind words you’ve sent for our team following the open letter from Ariane a couple of weeks ago. Thank you for buying Haiti tees and sending prayers.
Our employees in Haiti continue to come to work despite the many challenges there and we continue to receive garments in Kansas City every week. While our team keeps working, that’s not the case in other parts of Port-au-Prince, primarily at the ports. As news outlets have reported, armed gangs are blocking all access in and out of the port – this has been going on for weeks. Haiti customs is closed and the ports are completely full of containers waiting to be moved to their final destinations. In that pile of containers is a load of GOEX fabric that we shipped down in August. Unless the port opens soon, our team will run out of fabric to sew into garments and we have no way of getting more fabric to them.
As a result, we’re pulling contingency plans from the shelves. These plans are not meant to be long term solutions but to bridge the gap so our clients can continue purchasing from GOEX and we can, in turn, keep supporting our team in Haiti through this difficult season. The first of those contingency plans is to sew some garments in the Dominican Republic. Last year we sampled with a factory there so we would be able to ship fabric and start sewing if necessary. We now find ourselves in the place that we feel it’s necessary.
While this factory does not have the same social purpose as ours, we are confident that their labor practices are on the up and up and employees are being provided for appropriately and treated well at work. In addition, factories around the world have faced cancelled orders and layoffs as economies have slowed due to inflation. This factory is facing lay-offs for the next couple of months which makes us feel even better about sending work to them. Their team members will have work and be able to provide for their families going into the holidays. And, I will personally visit the factory and speak with employees there. We will completely guarantee that garments sewn in the DR will be up to our high standards of quality, will utilize our same USA fabric and will do good for the makers producing them.
Thank you for your continued support of GOEX and of our team in Haiti. We will continue to share updates as the situation changes.
Executive Director, GOEX