This study (38 pages) is a rapid assessment of the impact of the ongoing recession on leather and shoe workers in the Kanpur-Unnao cluster in the state of Uttar Pradesh in India.
With the COVID-19 induced nation-wide lockdown, the international brands cancelled existing orders; further, the international garment industry asked for discounts on orders that had already been supplied and also reduced orders for new supplies. With the lockdown both tanneries and shoe factories came to a halt.
With the announcement of the lockdown and everything being closed, workers could not get any alternative employment to overcome the crisis as a result of the pandemic. With brands not paying for orders, workers who were not paid their dues had to bear the brunt of the crisis. Along with not receiving wages, most workers often did not get any relief from the government. A few, who had ration cards, were able to get food grains, at subsidized prices, from the government Public Distribution System (PDS) shops. Most workers were forced to cut down on the number of meals, and, particularly, on the consumption of nutritious food. Many workers had to borrow money at high rates of interest.
The study covered a sample of 65 workers in the month of July and August, 2020.
This report is published by Society for Labour and Development with support of INKOTA-netzwerk, CIVIDEP and SÜDWIND.
Supported by Engagement Global on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The publishers alone are responsible for the content of this publication; the positions presented here do not reflect the position of the sponsor.