Teen actresses MARY-KATE and Ashley Olsen have come under attack from a watchdog group, which accuses them of not supporting paid maternity leave for workers on their clothing line.

America's NATIONAL LABOR COMMITTEE (NLC) claims it asked the 18-year-old twin sisters to support paid maternity leaves for the women who manufacture the Olsen's WAL-MART clothing line in Bangladesh and failed to hear back from them.

As a result, the group has scheduled a protest march for today (09DEC04) near New York University, which the stars attend.

The twins, however, claim they never received the request and say in a statement that all vendors who do business with their company "are required to comply with the most rigorous health and safety standards in the retail industry".

The Olsens' representative, MICHAEL PAGNOTTA, tells PEOPLE magazine, "They said they sent a petition months and months ago, but none of us can recall seeing it.

"Both organisations are talking and we hope it will come to a positive result. We certainly take the issue of fair treatment for workers seriously."

09/12/2004 02:41