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Sweat-Free T-shirts

 


Sweat-Free Ts logoAltogether, we Presbyterians print a lot of T-shirts. Unfortunately, almost all of the apparel readily available to us in stores was produced in sweatshops. The good news is that sweatshop-free shirts are available from the PC(USA), ready to print with your group’s logo or design. Whether you’re creating shirts for your youth group, upcoming mission trip, presbytery summer camp, congregational celebration or special event, put your faith in practice by choosing Sweat-Free Ts!


Why sweat-free?

There are many ways concerned Presbyterians can support our sisters and brothers in Christ who work hard on the production end of the garment chain. Since all of our actions — including our consumer purchases — reflect our faith and values, each purchase we make supports either the sweatshop industry or the growing number of innovative companies and cooperatives that abstain from sweatshop labor and have committed themselves to sweat-free values. Purchasing garments from responsible manufacturers, companies and cooperatives not only sends the message that we support their principles — it reflects our faith in a God and who promises that a better world is possible.

Sweat-free principles

The following are examples of sweat-free principles:

  • Workers receive a fair living wage and benefits.
  • Working conditions are just, including:
    • Freedom from excessive working hours and forced labor in all its forms.
    • Freedom from physical, sexual and emotional abuse.
    • Protection from workplace health and safety hazards.
  • Children are not subject to working conditions that jeopardize their physical, psychological, or intellectual development.
  • Women are neither discriminated against nor harassed.
  • All workers are free to organize and negotiate collective bargaining agreements.

Get the shirts

Sweat-Free Ts come direct from the Nueva Vida Women’s Sewing Cooperative in Nicaragua. The co-op was created with the assistance of Center for Development in Central America, with seed money provided by the One Great Hour of Sharing and distributed by the Presbyterian Hunger Program.


Woman handling a T-shirt

Yadira Vallejos explains the process of making Sweat-Free T-shirts. Here she demonstrates the machine used to sew collars into the shirts. Photo by Melanie Hardison.

Who makes Sweat-Free Ts?

Sweat-Free Ts come direct from the Nueva Vida Women’s Sewing Cooperative in Nicaragua. Together the members own and operate the cooperative as a small business. The co-op was created with the assistance of the Center for Development in Central America, thanks to seed money provided by the One Great Hour of Sharing and distributed by the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

photo of T-shirts in a packing box

White children’s tees get unpacked and ready for shipping to Presbyterians. (Photo by Melanie Hardison)

Sweat-Free tees come direct from the Nueva Vida Women’s Sewing Cooperative and Fair Trade Zone in Nicaragua. The co-op was created with the assistance of Center for Development in Central America with seed money provided by the One Great Hour of Sharing and distributed by the Presbyterian Hunger Program.

The shirts: High-quality, 100 percent organic cotton tees come blank and ready to print with your group’s logo or design. Only the Sweat-Free logo is preprinted in black on the sleeve. Colors available through Presbyterian Distribution Service (PDS) are white, natural and royal blue (“Presbyterian blue”).

Shirt sizes: child small, child medium, child large, adult small, adult medium, adult large, adult X-large, adult XX-large, adult XXX-large. (Presbyterian Blue Shirts Out of Stock: adult small, adult medium, adult XX-large. Natural Shirts Out of Stock: adult small, adult large, adult X-large, adult XX-large.)


Order by phone:

1. Call PDS at (800) 524-2612.

2. Request the PDS Item Number corresponding to the color shirt you want.

  • For white shirts ($5.00 each): PDS #74360-03-332 + size
  • For natural shirts ($5.00 each): PDS #74365-05-332 + size
  • For royal blue shirts ($5.00 each): PDS #74365-06-332 + size

3. Have the following information ready when you call:

  • The quantities and sizes you need. (Contact php@pcusa.org to request a discount on a large quantity.)
  • The address where you would like the shirts shipped. (Shirts can be shipped to your local screen printer.)
  • The date by which you need your shirts. (Rush orders are possible but will involve extra shipping costs.)

Order online:

1. Order here, and have the following info ready:

2. PDS Item Numbers (see #2 above). To specify sizes, type in the PDS number you want, and follow it with our sizing codes. (Example: To order Natural color in Adult XL, you would key 74365-05-332-XL)

  • Child small = CS
  • Child medium = CM
  • Child large = CL
  • Adult small = S
  • Adult medium = M
  • Adult large = L
  • Adult XL = XL
  • Adult XXL = XXL
  • Adult XXXL = XXXL
a tag from a t-shirt

Brand new Presbyterian Blue T-shirts feature the cooperative’s own fabric label, complete with their Web site address for further education. (Photo by Melanie Hardison)

 

You may contact php@pcusa.org to request a discount on a large quantity.

For other t-shirt options, try searching Ethix Merch.

(Please note that shirts from these vendors do not come with the Sweat-Free T logo preprinted; contact us if you need an electronic file to print the logo on shirts from these vendors.)

For large quantities, long sleeves or special colors or styles, email the cooperative to inquire about placing an order directly.

The cooperative can also do your screen printing, including placing the Sweat-Free T logo on your sleeve.


Other resources

Download or order the Guide to Fair Trade from Green America.

Download or order the Guide to Ending Sweatshops from Green America.