In September 2015, Nicole Perez of Brighton, Michigan, came across an alarming note. She had purchased a pack of Tinkerbell underwear for her daughter while at a mom-to-mom sale. When she opened it, out fell a note on a tiny piece of cardboard that read ‘Help Me! Plz,’ on one side and contact information for a woman named ‘MayAnn’ on the other, who specified that she was writing from the Philippines. The young woman is believed to be a factory worker.
“I was terrified,” Perez told a local news station. ” I just felt like everything just dropped to my stomach.”
The underwear was made by a company called Handcraft Manufacturing Corporation, whose president is Irwin Mizrahi.
The young mother contacted the manufacturing company, and they quickly apologized and offered to send her a brand new pack of underwear. But that isn’t what Perez wanted, so she continued to reach out to others for help.
Continue reading for photos and details below.
What would you do if you found this note inside something you just bought?
When Nicole Perez of Brighton, Michigan, opened a pack of Tinkerbell underwear she’d bought for her daughter, she was terrified to find a hidden message.
The message was written on a small piece of cardboard.
On the front, someone was desperately pleading for help.
On the other side, a woman by the name of MayAnn left her phone number and location.
I personally do not know anyone that has ever received a heartbreaking note like this, but it turns out that consumers have discovered SOS messages in packages before from workers in forced labor factories and camps.
The underwear was manufactured by Handcraft Manufacturing Corporation.
The company is based in New York, and their president is Irwin Mizrahi.
She received a quick response. Handcraft apologized and told her that they’d send her a brand new pack of underwear. After being contacted by a news station, Mizrahi responded that the first step in investigating was figuring out which factory the underwear came from.
While there are labor laws around the world, they don’t necessarily guarantee protection of factory workers.
Perez tried calling the number, but there was no answer. Rebecca Tungol, president of the Philippine American Cultural Center of Michigan, suggests that the number was probably from a pre-paid cell phone, which would make it untraceable.
Nicole sent the underwear back to the company so that the matter could be investigated further, but there have been no updates since the initial report.