U.S. Law An employer that violates more than one federal or state labor law governing minimum wage and overtime, child labor, occupational safety and health.
Chinese Labor Contract Law Effective January 2008; Meant to protect workers from companies on the issue of pay, overtime, health and safety practices and to create fair and safe practices for Chinese workers.
“ ( corporations)routinely break every rule in the book when it comes to labor rights. A huge number of high street chains and sporting goods retailers... ”
Because of investigative journalism, injustices are revealed. They ask the tough questions. They connect developed nations with the source. Journalists have the ability to tell the “Little Guy’s” story and expose the unjust practices of multinational corporations.
Foxconn China, Tricia Wang; Flickr.com (Creative Commons) Foxconn Factory in China Products Produced AppleMicrosoft Hewlett- Packard
Fair Labor Association Foxconn Investigation Hours More than 60 hours/week Pay Unpaid overtime Low salaries ($360-$455 per month) Safety Health risks
Chinese workers threatened to commit suicide in January 2012. 150 “Foxconn Resolves a Dispute With Some Workers in China” – NY Times January 2012
Anti-Foxconn Protest in Taiwan, Courtesy of Creative Commons Image by ttstam/Flickr, under Creative Commons
What was fixed? Working hours adjusted to Chinese legal limit of 49 hours/week 25% increase in pay
“The report will include new promises made by Apple that stand just as empty as the ones made over the past five years” – SumOfUs.org
What about 2012? Do you love your iphone? We all do. Well despite laws in China, the country continually uses labor practices which would be illegal in Europe and the U.S. Do you love your cheap University T-Shirts?
April 14, 2012 Olympics 2012 chiefs concerned by Adidas 'sweatshop' AFP – Sat, Apr 14, 2012 Accusations of sweatshop use in the production of LONDON 2012 team uniforms sparked controversy "We have spoken to Adidas and they have assured us that they are investigating these allegations, the conclusions of which will be made public.” Flickr, Creative Commons
April 27 th, 2012 A number of Foxconn Workers protested despite alleged changes made to salary and working conditions Creative Commons
GLOBALIZATION Has changed the “game” in production
In 2012, Journalists from Giving the public a sense of where their favorite products actually originate. exposed the Foxconn Protests New York Times BBC News CNN Bloomberg BusinessWeek and Huffington Post Fox News
“Companies could present a more transparent view of their supply chain” What Can Corporations Do?
Try and Buy Fair Trade “exercise due diligence when buying from any company that makes fair- trade claims. The willingness of Fair Indigo, American Apparel and others to disclose their practices on the Web could help” – NY Times
Sources “Secrets, Lies, and Sweatshops,” Bloomberg BusinessWeek http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/06_48/b4011001.htm. “Background on Sweatshops,” DoSomething.org http://www.dosomething.org/tipsandtools/background-sweatshops “Mass suicide' protest at Apple manufacturer Foxconn factory,” The Telegraph. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/ asia/china/9006988/Mass-Suicide-Protest-at-Apple-Manufacturer-Foxconn- factory.html. “Foxconn Apple Factories Violated Chinese Labor Laws, According To Fair Labor Association,” Huffington Post. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/29/foxconn-apple-factories-labor- violations_n_1389392.html. “Labor Contract Law of the People's Republic of China” http://en.cnci.gov.cn/Law/LawDetails.aspx?ID=6079&p=1. “A Click on Clothes to Support Fair Trade,” New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/25/technology/25ecom.html?pagewanted=all. “Apple Supplier Foxconn Pledges to Improve Worker Conditions,” http://www.neontommy.com/news/2012/03/apple-supplier-foxconn-pledges- improve-worker-conditions. “Overseas Sweatshops are a U.S. Responsibility,” Bloomberg BusinessWeek. http://www.businessweek.com/debateroom/archives/2007/06/overseas_sw eats.html. “Apple Addresses Foxconn Factory Report,” BBC News. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-17557630. “Foxconn Workers Protest Wages, Threaten to Jump off Roof,” Huffington Post. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/29/foxconn-apple-factories-labor- violations_n_1389392.html.
Spring 2012 Final Exam Communication Ethics Aubrey Bellezza