The tragic death of the 14-year-old Russian model who reportedly died two days after she collapsed following her appearance at a gruelling 13-hour fashion show in Shanghai has sparked debate on the issue of child labour in fashion industry.
The young model, Vlada Dzyuba, suffered from meningitis when she was completing her catwalk in a show for Asian designers. Her condition was not brought to attention at the time and she collapsed while waiting for her next appearance.
An ambulance was called to send Vlada who was unconscious to the hospital, but unfortunately, after two days in a coma, she passed away last Friday.
According to reports, Vlada’s preliminary cause of death is due to meningitis and compounded by utter exhaustion.
In an interview, Vlada’s mother, Oskana devastatingly told the media saying that, “She was calling me, saying ‘Mama, I am so tired. I so much want to sleep.
“It must have been the very beginning of the illness… and then her temperature shot up,” said the distraught mother while recalling her last phone calls with Vlada.
“I didn’t sleep myself and was calling her constantly, begging her to go to hospital,” she cried.
News outlets reported that the alleged reason why she did not go to the hospital was because she was not provided with medical insurance despite being on a three-month modelling contract in China without parental care.
After the incident was brought up, the modelling agency behind Vlada’s trip stepped up and explained that, “‘No one expected it to lead to such consequences.
“We are now reaping what we have sown,” said Elvira Zaitseva, head of Perm modelling agency who admitted fault in not personally checking the girl’s contract and medical insurance.
Further reports indicate that the government is demanding an explanation over Vlada’s living and working conditions in China as the model’s pay during her two-month contract based in Beijing was said to have been used up with other sundry surcharges such as air fares and accommodation.
Something clearly has to be done about these inhumane working hours..