Monday, November 23, 2015

Fortune story on China Labor Watch report

Fortune reported on the investigation of China Labor Watch into widespread and serious labor rights violations in Chinese toy factories supplying to top global toy brands. Forbes received responses from a number of the implicated toy brands. The beginning of the story is below. 

Hasbro, Mattel Toy Suppliers Slammed In Labor Report
November 22, 2015
by Claire Groden

China Labor Watch released results of undercover investigation.

Laborers at some toy factories in China work without adequate protection, toiling long hours with few, if any, breaks. Many facilities lack proper fire safety measures and subject workers to poor living conditions. For some, quitting means giving up earned wages. According to a new report by China Labor Watch, which investigated five major factories that supply toys to Hasbro and Mattel, labor violations are rampant in Chinese toy factories.

China Labor Watch sent undercover investigators to the factories, which altogether employ about 20,000 laborers. “Over the past 20 years, toy brands and retailers have reaped tremendous benefits from the labor and sometimes even the lives of Chinese workers,” China Labor Watch Program Coordinator Kevin Slaten said in a press release, “yet these companies fail to respect labor rights and to ensure that workers also enjoy the fruits of the toy industry’s success.”

The report found instances of hiring discrimination, mandatory and excessive overtime work, unpaid work, broken labor contracts, poor safety measures and few paths for laborers to seek recourse. Many of these issues also break Chinese labor law.

Read the rest of the Fortune story.