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Activism Fair 2013

February 3, 2013 in Featured

The Youth Labor Committee is hosting another activism fair!

On April 5th, 2013, the YLC will be hosting their second exposition of activist organizations. It will start at 7:40 am and will go until 3:00 pm. All attending organizations are encouraged to arrive at 6:30 am for the set up of their respective booths as well as to meet the other groups and eat the provided breakfast.

This is a great opportunity to show high school students what your organization is about.

If you are an activist organization that would like to be featured please contact us at

You can also contact Jessica Tilley at or Emily Voyles at

YLC hosts Activism Fair 2012

February 3, 2013 in Featured

On April 20, 2012 nearly 40 activist organizations from around the country participated in the 2012 Activism Expo hosted by the Youth Labor Committee at Dundee-Crown High School in Carpentersville, IL. A variety of causes were represented at the fair and presentations were made by some of the groups present as well as a phone conference with world-acclaimed MIT professor, Noam Chomsky.
The fair was set up similar to WBEZ’s annual Global Activism Expo. Issues represented at the YLC’s fair included feminism, civil rights, the environment, animal rights, gay rights and the diminishment of poverty in underdeveloped countries.
The Skype conference with Professor Chomsky was provided for students, teachers, and activist groups that wanted to attend. They had the opportunity to ask questions of a variety of topics like the election, drug trafficking, the rebellion in Syria, and North Korea’s failed mission launch.
To help further reach students and increase awareness on world issues, groups handed out buttons, pamphlets and stickers. Some groups sold merchandise like shirts, jewelry and even vegan cupcakes.
Students from another school in the district came and provided acoustic music for the fair.
Throughout the day, hundreds of students came to the fair. Due to this success and the request from many groups to do it again, the YLC plans to make this an annual event.

Students visiting Allowance for Good booth at Activism Fair

Students visiting PETA's booth at the Activism Fair

Students visting Nicaragua Direct's booth at the Activism Fair

Groups that were in attendance:
Free the Slaves
Amnesty International
Jorge Mujica
Alex O’Neal
Chicago Veggie Pride
Friends of the Fox
Outdoor Club
Rainforest Rescue Coalition
Working Bikes
Riders for Health
Mercy for Animals
Allowance for Good
Secular Students Association
National Youth Leadership Council
Operation Teen Safe Driving
Relay for Life
Reach Out
To Write Love on Her Arms
Equality Illinois
Fox Valley Coalition for Justice and Peace
Making Change to Walmart
Chicago Workers Collaborative
United Food and Commercial Workers
Occupy Chicago
Citizens Foundation
Chicago Solidarity Journal
Hearts of Honduras
Matanya’s Hope
Nicaragua Direct
Rise Pakistan
Tasmania Development
Zakat Foundation

YLC featured in Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights Article

February 3, 2013 in Featured


Students at high school near Sears headquarters demand response to petition, end to intimidating women to hide pattern of sexual abuse at Sears factory in Jordan.

CHICAGO, IL – A group of high school students from Chicago, Illinois are joining a viral campaign calling on some of the biggest brands in America — including Sears and Land’s End — to pull their orders from Classic Factory in Jordan, where managers have been accused of serially raping young female workers.

The students, who formed the Youth Labor Committee to collectively bring their demands to Sears, launched a petition on following allegations that Sears has been buying garments made at Classic Factory in Jordan, where dozens of workers have accused factory managers of sexual assault. They’re asking that Sears’

corporate executives meet with them and agree to increase sourcing transparency and stop working with suppliers with significant human rights violations.

“Multi-national corporations are continuously denying workers the most basic of human rights and are consistently blocking the truth in regards to what is happening at their factories around the world. We cannot stand by and continue to allow such atrocious behaviour to continue all in the name of profit for these huge corporations”

-Bill Kidera Youth Labor Committee member

“It is horrible that these women have no means of escape from these working conditions, and are even terrified to publicly discuss what is happening to them out of fear for their lives and the lives of their families. We are demanding that these corporations stand with us and demand the establishment of a safe and prosperous working environment, free from the terrors of rape, enslavement and captivity.”

-Dickie Schaefer Youth Labor Committee member

It’s disgusting that these women have to suffer through shame and fear simply for corporate profit. It’s time to start putting fellow human beings before money.

-Isabella Romano Youth Labor Committee member

The online petition, coupled with the students’ plan to protest and leaflet outside Sears’ headquarters and local Sears and Land’s End stores, is likely to increase pressure on the companies to pull their orders from Classic Factory. In addition to Sears, ongoing campaigns are asking Target, Hanes, Macy’s and Walmart to pull their orders as well.

“The students of the Youth Labor Committee’s organizing around such a complex issue has been remarkable,” said Amanda Kloer, Director of Organizing at “They’re using a combination of emerging technology and traditional organizing to spur Sears and Land’s End to action.”

The campaign on has been covered by major news outlets around the world, including Ms. Magazine, Huffington Post, Jordan Times, and the Daily Mirror. Activists recently launched a companion campaign asking Queen Rania to tweet her support for the workers of Classic.

Upcoming Activism Fairs including the YLC

April 18, 2012 in Featured

Youth Labor Committee students from Dundee-Crown High School are holding the first activism fair on Friday the 20th of April. The members of the YLC are trying to promote messages of peace and solidarity. The Youth Labor Committee has invited almost fifty groups to participate with interests ranging from animal and environmental rights, worker/human rights and the occupy movement.

This event is being held in conjunction with the WBEZ Global Activism Fair being held at the University of Illinois/Chicago on the 28th. The YLC has been invited to the event and we are thrilled to gain such recognition.

Groups attending the activism fair will also have the opportunity to hold presentations, talks or workshops during the day. Our keynote speaker will be MIT Linguistic Professor Noam Chomsky.

YLC Activists Featured on WBEZ!

September 28, 2011 in Featured

Charles Kernaghan and members of the Youth Labor Committee are featured on WBEZ Worldview!

Click here for the full story and online broadcast.

YLC Protest Makes Front Page of Sri Lankan Newspaper!

September 13, 2011 in Featured

US Students Against Lankan Rapist

Chicago-area high school students are protesting Sears’s purchase of clothing from a Jordanian factory where a supervisor from Sri Lanka has been an unpunished serial rapist of young female “guest workers,” also from Sri Lanka. Read the rest of this entry →

Tell Walmart to Stop Rape of Young Women in its Factories

August 9, 2011 in Featured

Please join us in the fight against Wal-Mart, Sears, Kohl’s, Hanes, Target and Macy’s and stand with us in solidarity for the workers at the Classic Factory in Jordan who suffer rape and sexual abuse in their workplace. Our friends at the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights are working around the clock to break this story…lets do everything we can to help! Read the rest of this entry →

CLAR! Welcome to the Fight!

March 17, 2011 in Featured

The Youth Labor Committee has put together a welcome video for our brothers and sisters in The Child Labor and Rights Project (CLAR) in Turkey! We are so excited to continue working with each and everyone of you and are encouraged by all your dedication!
Check out the amazing work being done at:

In Solidarity!

YLC activist’s efforts towards Sears highlighted

February 1, 2011 in Featured

On February 1st, 2011, the Daily Herald, a northwest Chicago suburban newspaper, published the following article highlighting the efforts of Mike Kelley, a member of the Youth Labor Committee. The Youth Labor Committee is emboldened by the coverage and is looking forward to continuing the discussion with Sears concerning their global compliance program.

You can read the article Here.

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Sears Bails on YLC, Fears Media Attention

January 28, 2011 in Featured

Click Here to download our evidence packet concerning Sears’ Global Compliance

On January 20th, the Youth Labor Committee had been planning on meeting with representatives from Sears Holdings Corporation in order to discuss Sears’ global compliance program together. This was as a direct response to the result of their last meeting, on December 10th at Sears’ corporate headquarters. At this meeting, representatives of Sears had asked that the YLC examine their Global Compliance Program, as they believed that it would appropriately address the issues which the YLC had broached. The Youth Labor Committee followed this path of action, spending the weeks after the first meeting researching Sears’ Global Compliance Program and analyzing the issues within these standards.
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