Blue Tin Production
Grant Type: General Operating Support
Duration: January 1, 2023 - December 31, 2023
Blue Tin Production (BTP) is an apparel manufacturing worker co-op run by Muslim women and women of color driving system change within global fashion supply chains. BTP calls for the abolition of garment sweatshops, where violence against Muslim women of color is normalized. In its place, BTP centers the leadership and economic mobility of Muslim women while setting new labor standards.
The first of its kind in the United States, Blue Tin Production (BTP) fills a major gap in ethical and sustainable manufacturing while systematically addressing the “unsolvable” issues in the fashion industry. Sweatshops dominate the industry, and garment workers are predominantly Muslim, working-class, undocumented, and women of color. Virtually every issue related to the war on terror, surveillance, gender, class, race, sustainability, and borders can be found on factory floors, and Muslim garment workers remain one of the most systemically silenced voices in the world.
BTP reimagines labor and sustainability in the fashion industry and within Muslim communities and communities of color. BTP’s programmatic work includes building the power of its garment workers through a worker cooperative model and working with Muslim fashion designers, who are often turned away by manufacturers, to produce their clothing, helping them build wealth and creative entrepreneurship. BTP also hosts political workshop series and builds community among non-Black Muslim communities and Black (Muslim and non-Muslim) communities primarily in the south and southwest sides of Chicago, tying issues related to race, immigration, and the war on terror to class and borders. Their expansion of community engagement at 63rd House offers programming for professional development, financial literacy, childcare housing equipment, and much more. BTP works globally with international human rights organizations and Muslim-led garment worker unions to develop new labor standards.
Year founded: 2019
Location: Chicago, IL