Roman Originals, the company selling the blue and black dress that blew up on social media last week, found itself in the middle of a child labor investigation, according to a 2007 report by British newspaper, The Observer.
The company – which sells the internet’s favorite black and blue dress for about $77, and is reportedly planning to produce a white and gold version – was apparently one of at least two UK-based retailers that contracted services through a supplier in India.
During a trip through what the publication called “a network of mud-bricked sweatshops” in a section of New Delhi, The Observer said in 2007 it “found dozens of children cramped together producing clothes for the UK high street. In one sweatshop, children were finishing a summer dress, now on sale for £16.99 [about $26] in 250 Select clothing stores across Britain.”
The publication quoted one boy who implied he lived at the sweatshop: “<<I want to work here. I have somewhere to sleep at night>>, he says looking furtively behind him. <<The work is hard and my back hurts from crouching over the material but I am learning>>.”
The dress seller later said in a statement that it canceled its contract with the supplier immediately after learning about the accusations.
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