Opening in Maximiliancenter

Councillor from Bonn strongly criticises Primark

Ein Mitarbeiter räumt in der Primark-Filiale Ware ein.

An employee puts away items in the Primark branch.

The Bonn councillor Carolin Krause has taken a stance against the discount textile retailer Primark on the Facebook page of Green politician Katja Dörner. Primark opens on Tuesday at 10am.

Long before the doors of Primark in the new Maximiliancenter open for the first time at 10am on Tuesday, many users of social media networks have been delivering a verbal exchange of blows to the controversial discount textile retailer. The city’s social and family affairs officer, Carolin Krause (CDU), has also posted what she thinks of Primark – apparently not much - on the Facebook page of Bonn member of parliament Katja Dörner (Greens). “I reject the Primark system,” writes Krause.

As a member of parliament, Dörner had written an open letter to the Irish textile company on Facebook. In it, she explains that she will not be accepting the invitation to the opening but will instead gather with many others in front of the store and demonstrate against the “fast fashion” business model. “Even though I am naturally very interested in an attractive city centre in Bonn with a wide range of shopping opportunities, in my view the business model used by Primark - and other textile companies – is reprehensible,” write Dörner.

The “fast fashion” business model that also has a major influence on Primark is neither sustainable nor socially acceptable. “Clothes are bought in ever larger quantities for little money, while catastrophic conditions often prevail in the factories where they are produced.” Primark is defending itself against the criticism and continually refers to measures on its part to meet the standards of the International Labour Organisation of the United Nations.

Krause, who according to the city press office is currently away on holiday, writes to Dörner: “I can completely understand your letter and would also not go to the opening, even if I weren’t on holiday.” However, one must not lose sight of the fact that Bonn residents on lower incomes also want to dress themselves and their children fashionably. “However, I also reject the Primark system. Now it’s up to the men and women in Bonn whether this business model is accepted.”

City spokesperson Monika Hörig confirmed when asked by the GA that Lord Mayor Ashok Sridharan had been invited to the Primark opening. “The Lord Mayor was invited but is not going, nor is any representative. The city is celebrating the opening of the Maximiliancenter by the Lord Mayor, but not that of each individual tenant.” As reported, Sridharan and the project developer of the Maximiliancenter, Ten Brinke, officially inaugurated the centre in the passageway in the lower ground floor on Tuesday of last week.

Original text: Lisa Inhoffen.

Translation: kc