Employees at a garment factory in Lesotho, a tiny country in southern Africa, say they have lived in constant fear for years. Each day at 7 a.m., as their sewing machines whirred, a familiar panic rose in many of them: It’s not safe here.
At least 38 current workers say abuse and harassment are taking place within the walls of Hippo Knitting, a Taiwanese company located in Lesotho’s capital, Maseru, an investigation by TIME and The Fuller Project has found. All employees interviewed asked to remain anonymous out of safety concerns and fear of losing their jobs.
The factory predominantly supplies one brand: Fabletics, a popular U.S. athletic apparel line co-founded by actor Kate Hudson.