How will Brexit affect employment in the fashion industry?

So we voted Brexit- what will be the impact of the fashion industry and the UK employment law?

Obviously, Brexit will significantly influence the UK fashion industry for the future.
There are prospective changes to the EU which as a consequence will mean changes to employment laws and ultimately business decisions. Consequently, Brexit shall have a significant impact on the fashion industry in the U.K.

Kate Moss
Rule Britannia

Many employers in the fashion industry appreciate the unique multicultural state of the UK fashion industry. Thereby enjoying the diversity in cultures that promote creativity and innovation. Therefore such employers wish to ensure a post-Brexit UK will permit them to continue seeking pan-European talent across Europe.

Talks with Europe.
It’s not just European issues, it’s Worldwide issues.

As we know Theresa May (the current Prime Minister) anticipates invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty by the end of this month.

As a result it is suggested that employers in the fashion industry should take certain steps in anticipation of the terms of Brexit being finalised.

These include to:-

1. Consider your current workforce’s immigration status- and try to get prepared for any contingencies once the Article 50 is invoked.
2. Keep abreast of free movement issues. It has been said that there is a reduction in retail business and travel frequency where airlines need to charge higher fares and new ‘air service agreements’ need to be discussed.
3. Ensure no existing immigration rules are breached and that you are fully compliant.
4. Consider where your fashion buyers and other staff have regular overseas travel – ensure that you are compliant with time limits for business visitors.

Britain has enjoyed sending British employees to Europe but in anticipation of the implementation of Article 50 there is a lot of uncertainty and volatility.

Many of employment protection emanates from Europe reflecting good employee relation practices. For instance the rights of employers not to discriminate against staff on the grounds of protected characteristics for example race, gender and age.

Further some fundamental laws of the EU merely supplement rights which are already embodied in the UK law, before the EU chose to legislate, for example UK Equal Pay Rights or Disability Discrimination.

UK employment laws are by origin domestic, for example shared parental leave and shared parental pay.

Finally and most importantly as part of the current rules of the European Economic Area (EEA), the UK will remain subject to many key aspects of EU employment law, those been TUPE, collective redundancies consultation, working time, and the protection afforded by Directive 2008/104/EC on temporary agency work. Therefore, we are likely to see very little change.

In conclusion, the fashion industries test of creativity will be put to task, as it increasingly needs to adapt and evolve with, political and economical change as a result of Brexit.

The best of British is key.

15 thoughts on “How will Brexit affect employment in the fashion industry?

  1. Very enlightening. Brexit and its impact will continue to be unraveled for some time to come. An insightful perspective

      1. Greetings, very interesting. I think The fashion industry will survive and thrive as the basic materials are relatively cheap and the main profit is from creation and design which still leaves plenty of room for profit.

        1. Agreed Devon. Particularly with such concerns as Primark, the super cheap Irish clothes retailer. Primark has an irresistible concept: trendy clothes at very low prices. Thus creating fast fashion, by encouraging consumers to buy heaps of items, discard them after a few wears, and then come back again for another batch of new outfits. Therefore, Primark withstands tiny margins, making its money by volume.
          Devon, I take this opportunity to wish you all the best for you and your late fine father, who will always be remembered for his endearing smile and sincere support of myself and my legal practice. ??.

  2. Interesting piece Antoinette. All the uncertainty can’t be good for the industry or any industry for that matter. I wonder if a lot of employers are already erring on the side of caution and laying down plans which might seriously affect their future creativity/success.

    1. Thank you for commenting. Your contribution is appreciated.
      Although British Fashion Council shows that the fashion sector has risen in value from £26bn in 2013 to £28bn; an increase of 8%. Therefore, the fashion industry appears to have responded positively as a consequence of The European Referendum. There seems to be uncertainty as to whether we shall have a hard Brexit or a soft Brexit.
      Importing goods has become more expensive because of the fall in the pound, but some smaller British businesses are thriving.

  3. I will like to congratulate you for your hard work on fashion. God will reward you for your efforts. Your concerns on the effects of Brexit on employment on the fashion industry. My opinion is that during the Brexit; UK economy would experience a turbulent flow later resulting in Laminar flow economy and consolidate itself later. The fashion industry would go through same phenomenon. However it would later bring more competition and dynamic impulse into the fashion industry. Brexit is a blessing in disguise for fashion industry. Well done.

  4. Furtherance to my last comments, few people might misunderstood my comments when I said Brexit is a blessing in disguise. It is the same to say that Brexit is a disappointment. However every disappointment comes with a blessing in disguise. Brexit is a disappointment to many people but a blessing in disguise we never know, but time will tell. Tony, your fashion design is already known and becoming famous in Europe and other continents including some parts of Africa. However it is rather unfortunate that UK decided to try it alone with other Trade partners across the Globe. I’m optimistic that it would benefit your fashion business in the long run There are other avenues to be explored such as Commonwealth Countries and others You only need marketing strategy as egg is egg your designs are fantastic. One must learn to be optimistic when there is a change in life, this is because whether we like it or not Brexit is irreversible and we shall continue to experience difficult situations during the turbulent and transitional period of Brexit Era. The Politicians are the bigger threats than anything else. They are promoting the insanity. Why calling the Referendum? Why not going through the acid tests and all the debates they are going through now before calling the Referendum?. No one can read other people’s minds when making a decision.
    The employment laws again are in the hands of the politicians and I have made my opinion known to my MP regarding this area, I can only suggest but can not make a decision. We need to be optimistic and learn to see the lights at the end of every dark tunnel also to know that we can always find rainbow at the end of every thunderstorm of life.
    The Lord is our Shepherd and the God that we serve will not shut one door without opening another one for us, for every major disappointment, there is a hiden blessing.
    In this regard, when life gives us lemons, we should make lemonade out of it or if given bitter Cola, make Cola drink out of it, this life will give us everything we want but test our Faith to take away one thing that we love.
    Tony You Will Never Walk Alone, just have faith in God. Brexit shall benefit your fashion business.

    1. Thank you Sonny. Spoke like an ambassador of Antoinette Olivia designs. With favourable support like yours, I am truly optimistic of the opportunities that Brexit shall bring. Your unbending support is truly appreciated.

  5. Antoinette,

    Food for thought, I think we are all in for a bumpy ride, regardless of industry. Creative
    Business like the fashion industry will have to adapt, but like history has time and again illustrated sometimes change and challenges can inspire the best work.

    1. Thank you Sherry for your thoughts.
      I agree. Change and challenges can inspire the best work. Brexit calls upon the creative industries to compound structural strengths and confidently build multiple reforms and cooperate with other organisations to build global stability.

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