|Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct: Calvin's Story|
by Chris Thompson, Special to CorpWatch
Calvin Bryant was crippled in a Imperial Sugar plant explosion in Savannah, Georgia, that also killed 14 of his co-workers. In a new CorpWatch investigation into federal contractors who win millions in government business despite violating workers rights, Chris Thompson tells his story.
|Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct: Rodney's Story|
by Chris Thompson, Special to CorpWatch
Rodney Bridgett was killed when a piece of Tyson Foods’ heavy equipment crushed him at the company's beef processing plant in Sioux City, Iowa. In a new CorpWatch investigation into federal contractors who win millions in government business despite violating workers rights, Chris Thompson tells his story.
|WORLD: Disaster Plans Lacking at Deep Rigs|
by Ben Casselman and Guy Chazen, Wall Street Journal
May 17th, 2010
Dealing with a deep-sea spill is a a problem that spans the industry, whose major players include Chevron Corp, Royal Dutch Shell and Petróleo Brasileiro SA. Without adequately planning for trouble, the oil business has focused on developing experimental equipment and techniques to drill in ever deeper waters, according to a Wall Street Journal examination.
|US: U.S. Said to Allow Drilling Without Needed Permits|
by Ian Urbina, New York Times
May 13th, 2010
The federal Minerals Management Service gave permission to BP and dozens of other oil companies to drill in the Gulf of Mexico without first getting required permits from another agency that assesses threats to endangered species — and despite strong warnings from that agency about the impact the drilling was likely to have on the gulf.
|US: BP touts itself as 'green,' but faces PR disaster with 'BP oil spill'|
by Paul Farhi, Washington Post
May 6th, 2010
Ever careful of its public image, BP has been careful not to invoke its name in regard to the massive ongoing oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. "We refer to it as Gulf of Mexico response," said Andrew Gowers, the company's spokesman. The name of a disaster can be critical, both as a historic matter and the more immediate matters of image, public relations and legal liability.
|US: FBI Probes Explosion in West Virginia Mine|
by Kris Maher and Siobhan Hughes, Wall Street Journal
April 30th, 2010
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is conducting a criminal probe of the deadly explosion at a Massey Energy Co. mine in West Virginia in early April that killed 29 miners, according to people familiar with the matter. In a statement on Friday Massey Energy said, "Massey has no knowledge of criminal wrongdoing."
|US: Deaths at West Virginia Mine Raise Issues About Safety|
by Ian Urbina and Michael Cooper, New York Times
April 6th, 2010
Rescue workers began the precarious task Tuesday of removing explosive methane gas from the coal mine where at least 25 miners died the day before. The mine owner’s -- Massey Energy Company -- dismal safety record, along with several recent evacuations of the mine, left federal officials and miners suggesting that Monday’s explosion might have been preventable.
|CANADA: Canadian Rail Engineers Begin a Strike|
by Ian Austen, New York Times
November 28th, 2009
About 1,700 locomotive engineers with the Canadian National Railway went on strike early Saturday. The walkout followed a decision by Canadian National to impose a new contract on its workers, including a 500-mile increase in the distance engineers are required to cover each month. The union said that the increased distance would sometimes make engineers work seven-day weeks without overtime.
|US: A Dispute Over Unionizing at Montana Hair Salons|
by Steven Greenhouse, New York Times
August 29th, 2009
The Regis Corporation, parent of Cost Cutters and the largest hair salon company in the U.S., is asking stylists in Montana to sign a document foregoing any future pro-union signature. Regis claims the document is meant to protect against union-card legislation now in Congress.
|INDONESIA: Scramble for coal assets in Indonesia|
by Sundeep Tucker and John Aglionby, Financial Times
June 7th, 2009
Some of the world’s largest energy groups are scrambling to acquire coal mining assets in Indonesia as family-run conglomerates consider divestments to raise cash. Peabody Energy, the US coal miner, and Xstrata, the Anglo-Swiss miner, are believed to be among those interested. Industry analysts said Chinese, South Korean, Indian and Middle Eastern companies were also scouring Indonesia for assets.
|WORLD: The Jewel Trade's Fading Luster|
by V. Dion Haynes and Rama Lakshmi, Washington Post
March 28th, 2009
The drop in U.S. demand for high-end jewelry in a slumping economy is having ripple effects around the globe as stores close, workers are laid off in mass in the diamond-polishing factories of Gujarat, and countries like Botswana experience a dramatic drop in diamond revenue.
|US/CANADA: Alaskan lake’s fate could echo across continent|
by Todd Wilkinson, Christian Science Monitor
March 24th, 2009
A landmark legal case now before the US Supreme Court holds huge implications for lakes across the continent. Nearly four decades the Clean Water Act was passed to protect waterways from industrial pollution, a proposal by Coeur d’Alene Mines Corp. to dispose of tons of effluent in Alaska's Lower Slate Lake has sparked an international debate.
|UGANDA/IRAQ: Why 10,000 Ugandans are eagerly serving in Iraq|
by Max Delany, Christian Science Monitor
March 6th, 2009
Hired out to multibillion-dollar companies for hundreds of dollars a month, 10,000 Ugandans risk their lives seeking fortunes protecting US Army bases, airports, and oil firms in Iraq for as little as $600 per month. Many are looking to go to Afghanistan as the Obama administration increases contracts there.
|US, GLOBAL: Layoffs Without Notice Sting Workers|
by Steve Lohr, New York Times
March 5th, 2009
With the economy weakening, chief executives want Wall Street to see them as tough cost-cutters who are not afraid to lay off workers. Big companies also routinely carry out scattered layoffs that are small enough to stay under the radar, contributing to an unemployment rate that keeps climbing. I.B.M. is one such company.
|US: 'Card check' ballots to determine union representation|
by Erin Rosa, Colorado Independent
February 24th, 2009
Glenn Spencer, executive director of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, was in Denver on Monday to decry H.R. 800, federal legislation that would give workers greater rights to unionize. Spencer spoke at the offices of the Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry and warned of the “most radical rewrite of labor law in 70 years.”
|UK, ITALY: Italian business body hits at Brown|
by Jean Eaglesham, Financial Times
February 9th, 2009
In the context of global debate around the unfettered free-market system, UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown comes under fire from an Italian business association for not reining in wildcat labor strikes at the Lindsey oil refinery in Lincolnshire.
|JAPAN: Nissan to Slash Payroll, Pare Japanese Output |
by John Murphy, Wall Street Journal
February 9th, 2009
Nissan Motor Co. Monday announced plans to slash more than 20,000 jobs world-wide, shift production out of Japan and seek government assistance from Japan, the U.S. and elsewhere, part of a broad new effort by the Japanese car maker to weather the economic downturn.
|US: In Factory Sit-In, an Anger Spread Wide|
by MONICA DAVEY, New York Times
December 7th, 2008
In a glimpse at how the nation’s loss of more than 600,000 manufacturing jobs this year is boiling over, workers laid off from Republic Windows and Doors, said they would not leave, after company officials announced that the factory was closing. The workers were owed vacation and severance pay and were not given the 60 days of notice generally required by federal law in lay-offs.
|US/IRAQ: Indiana guardsmen sue defense contractor KBR|
by Farah Stockman, Boston Globe
December 4th, 2008
Sixteen Indiana national guardsmen filed a lawsuit yesterday against military contractor KBR. The complaint alleges that several reservists contracted respiratory system tumors and skin rashes after guarding reconstruction work at the Qarmat Ali treatment plant, strewn with the toxin chromium dichromate.
|US: 2nd Walkout at Boeing in 3 Years
by MICHELINE MAYNARD, The New York Times
September 6th, 2008
The Boeing Company, whose order books are bulging with demand for its planes, was hit by its second major strike in three years early Saturday, when the union that represents 27,000 machinists in Washington State, Oregon and Kansas walked off the job.
|US: Inquiry Finds Under-Age Workers at Meat Plant
by JULIA PRESTON, The New York Times
August 5th, 2008
State labor investigators have identified 57 under-age workers who were employed at a kosher meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa, and have asked the attorney general to bring criminal charges against the company for child labor violations, Dave Neil, the Iowa Labor Commissioner, said on Tuesday.
|US: Companies Tap Pension Plans
To Fund Executive Benefits
by ELLEN E. SCHULTZ and THEO FRANCIS, The Wall Street Journal
August 4th, 2008
In recent years, companies from Intel Corp. to CenturyTel Inc. collectively have moved hundreds of millions of dollars of obligations for executive benefits into rank-and-file pension plans. This lets companies capture tax breaks intended for pensions of regular workers and use them to pay for executives' supplemental benefits and compensation.
|US: OSHA Seeks $8.7 Million Fine Against Sugar Company
by SHAILA DEWAN, The New York Times
July 26th, 2008
Imperial Sugar, the owner of a refinery near Savannah where 13 workers died in a sugar dust explosion in February, knew of safety hazards at the plant as early as 2002 but did nothing, and should pay more than $8.7 million for safety violations, the head of the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration said Friday.
|US: Toxic Smoke and Mirrors|
by Jim Morris, Mother Jones
Filed in federal District Court in Cleveland, their claim joined thousands of others pending against welding-products manufacturers in state and federal courts. (Employers have not been among the targets because lawyers generally concluded they were ignorant of the metal's dangers.)
|US: Workers on Hunger Strike Say They Were Misled on Visas
by JULIA PRESTON, The New York Times
June 7th, 2008
The Indian workers say they were deceived by Signal International and labor recruiters when they paid as much as $20,000 for visas they believed would allow them to work and live permanently with their families in the United States. In fact, the H-2B visas are for short-term contracts.
|GLOBAL: Union Takes Anti-Buyout Campaign Worldwide
by MICHAEL J. de la MERCED, The New York Times
June 4th, 2008
Beginning Wednesday, the Service Employees International Union, one of the country’s biggest unions, will call upon people to attend protests on July 17 in 100 cities in 25 countries. The rallying cry will be: Take back the economy from buyout firms that the union says have exploited tax loopholes to amass great wealth at others’ expense.
|US: In Stock Plan, Employees See Stacked Deck
by MARY WILLIAMS WALSH, The New York Times
May 29th, 2008
Now that many U.S. Sugar workers are reaching retirement age, though, the company has been cashing them out of the retirement plan at a much lower price than they could have received. Unknown to them, an outside investor was offering to buy the company — and their shares — for far more. Longtime employees say they have lost out on tens of thousands of dollars each and millions of dollars as a group, while insiders of the company came out ahead.
|RUSSIA: As Gazprom Goes, So Goes Russia|
by Andrew E. Kramer, New York Times
May 11th, 2008
Gazprom and the Russian government have long had a close relationship, but the revolving door between them is spinning especially fast this year. But Gazprom also epitomizes the risks of state capitalism: waste and inefficiency.
|MEXICO: Pemex Oozes Corruption|
by Diego Cevallos , IPS
May 7th, 2008
Funds belonging to the Mexican state oil monopoly, Pemex, have paid in recent years for liposuction treatment for the wife of the company's chief executive, a presidential candidate's campaign, contracts with firms facing legal action, and the whims of trade union leaders who are not required to account for their expenses.
|US: Working Life (High and Low)
by STEVEN GREENHOUSE, The New York Times
April 20th, 2008
Jean called it “a great deal for FedEx. They don’t have to pay for trucks, for the insurance, for fuel, for maintenance, for tires,” she said. “We have to pay for all those things. And they don’t have to pay our Social Security.”
|US: Families Sue Chiquita in Deaths of 5 Men
by CARMEN GENTILE, The New York Times
March 17th, 2008
Last week, Ms. Julin, who has remarried, and the widows of the four other men filed a lawsuit against Chiquita Brands International Inc., saying the company contributed to their husbands’ deaths by financing the leftist group.
|US: Workers Sue Gulf Coast Company That Imported Them|
by ADAM NOSSITER, The New York Times
March 11th, 2008
A group of 500 foreign welders and pipefitters brought in to work at Gulf Coast oil rig yards after Hurricane Katrina said Monday that they had sued their employer, claiming they were lured with false promises of permanent-resident status, forced to live in inhumane conditions and then threatened when they protested.
|CAYMAN ISLANDS: Top Iraq contractor skirts US taxes offshore
by Farah Stockman, The Boston Globe
March 6th, 2008
Kellogg Brown & Root, the nation's top Iraq war contractor and until last year a subsidiary of Halliburton Corp., has avoided paying hundreds of millions of dollars in federal Medicare and Social Security taxes by hiring workers through shell companies based in this tropical tax haven.
|US: Immigration Agency Accused of Illegal Searches|
by N.C. Aizenman, The Washington Post
February 26th, 2008
A privately convened commission of labor and immigrant advocates held the first of several planned nationwide hearings yesterday to publicize allegations that U.S. immigration officials routinely violate constitutional protections against unreasonable search and seizure during workplace raids.
|CHILE: Copper Boom - Cui Bono?|
by Daniela Estrada, IPS News
January 11th, 2008
According to global forecasts, the price of copper, Chile’s main export, will remain high in 2008 thanks to strong demand from China. But just who will benefit from this bonanza is up for debate.
|CHINA: In Chinese Factories, Lost Fingers and Low Pay|
by DAVID BARBOZA, New York Times
January 5th, 2008
Nearly a decade after some of the most powerful companies in the world — often under considerable criticism and consumer pressure — began an effort to eliminate sweatshop labor conditions in Asia, worker abuse is still commonplace in many of the Chinese factories that supply Western companies, according to labor rights groups.
|IRAQ: Sexual Violence: An Occupational Hazard -- In Iraq and at Home|
by Marie Tessier, Women's Media Center
December 26th, 2007
Jamie Leigh Jones was just 20 in 2005 when she took a leap of faith to work in Iraq for her employer, military contractor Kellogg, Brown & Root, then a subsidiary of Halliburton. She went on a mission she believed in. Shortly after her arrival in Iraq, however, Jones' ambitions were dashed in an alleged gang rape by co-workers.
|IVORY COAST: The Bitter Taste of Cocoa in Côte d'Ivoire|
by Michael Deibert, IPS News
December 3rd, 2007
In addition to funding conflict, cocoa revenues are believed to have been defrauded for enrichment of persons in both the government and rebel camps. Article also mentions the following corporations: Lev-Ci and Cargill.
|US: Banana Workers Get $3.3M In Pesticide Case
November 7th, 2007
A Los Angeles jury awarded $3.3 million to six workers on Monday who claimed they were left sterile by a pesticide used at a banana plantation in Nicaragua operated by Dole Fresh Fruit Co.
|US: Gap plans 'sweatshop free' labels|
by Dan McDougall, Guardian
November 4th, 2007
In what would be the biggest commitment to ending child labour ever undertaken by a major retailer, Gap Inc is drawing up plans to label its products 'Sweatshop Free'.
|US: BP Settlements Seen on Safety and Price Cases|
by Stephen Labaton and Lowell Bergman, NY Times
October 24th, 2007
The British energy company BP, tarnished by a string of costly legal problems, is preparing to settle accusations that it was criminally indifferent to worker safety and that it manipulated energy prices.
|US: Wal-Mart Workers Win $62 Million|
by Marieclaire Dale, AP
October 4th, 2007
Wal-Mart workers in Pennsylvania who previously won a $78.5 million class-action award for working off the clock will share an additional $62.3 million in damages, a judge ruled Wednesday.
|US: UAW Workers Walk Off the Job|
by John D. Stoll and Jeffrey McCracken, Wall Street Journal
September 24th, 2007
The decision Monday by the United Auto Workers to walk off the job at General Motors highlights yet again the divisive element of healthcare in labor relations, and how what began as a historic accident is now the single biggest liability for both businesses and workers.
|CHINA: U.S. Group Accuses Chinese Toy Factories of Labor Abuses|
by David Barboza , New York Times
August 21st, 2007
A workers’ rights group in the United States released a report on Tuesday detailing what it called brutal conditions and illegal practices in Chinese toy factories, many of which supply some of the world’s biggest brand-name toy makers, including Walt Disney and Hasbro.
|WORLD: We must count the true cost of cheap China|
by Richard McGregor, Financial Times
August 2nd, 2007
In the wake of the multiple scandals over tainted Chinese food and drug exports in recent months, Chinese goods now have an indelible image of being not just cheap, but life-threatening as well. But the fact that wrongly labelled foods, liquor and pharmaceuticals have routinely sickened and even killed people en masse in China has been largely overlooked.
|COLOMBIA: Suing Multinationals Over Murder|
by Ken Stier, TIME Magazine
August 1st, 2007
Organized labor often complains of its treatment at the hands of corporate America, but its accusations pale in comparison to those made recently by the widows of Colombian mine workers in an Alabama courtroom. During a two-week trial, a Birmingham jury weighed charges that the local Drummond Coal Company bore responsibility for the murders of three union leaders who represented workers at its Colombian mine - the world's largest open pit mine.
|MEXICO: Thousands of Unpaid Teens Bag Groceries for Wal-Mart|
by Joseph Contreras, Newsweek
August 1st, 2007
Wal-Mart prides itself on cutting costs at home and abroad, and its Mexican operations are no exception. Wal-Mart is Mexico's largest private-sector employer in the nation today, with nearly 150,000 local residents on its payroll. An additional 19,000 youngsters between the ages of 14 and 16 work after school in hundreds of Wal-Mart stores, mostly as grocery baggers, throughout Mexico-and none of them receives a red cent in wages or fringe benefits.
|IRAQ: Foreign Workers Abused at Embassy, Panel Told|
by William Branigin, The Washinton Post
July 27th, 2007
Two American civilian contractors who worked on a massive U.S. Embassy construction project in Baghdad told Congress yesterday that foreign laborers were deceptively recruited and trafficked to Iraq to toil at the site, where they experienced physical abuse and substandard working conditions.
|COLOMBIA: Drummond Union: Govt Muffles Key Witness|
by Frank Bajak, Forbes.com
July 24th, 2007
The union activists suing U.S. coal company Drummond Co. Inc. in Alabama in the 2001 murders of three labor leaders say deliberate foot-dragging by Colombian authorities is preventing the jury from hearing their star witness. Concerned by the delay, 12 Democrats in the U.S. Congress wrote Colombia's vice president last week asking him to intercede.
|US: Tax Break Used by Drug Makers Failed to Add Jobs|
by Alex Berenson, The New York Times
July 24th, 2007
Two years ago, when companies received a big tax break to bring home their offshore profits, the president and Congress justified it as a one-time tax amnesty that would create American jobs.
Drug makers were the biggest beneficiaries of the amnesty program, repatriating about $100 billion in foreign profits and paying only minimal taxes. But the companies did not create many jobs in return. Instead, since 2005 the American drug industry has laid off tens of thousands of workers in thi
|BURMA: No End to Forced Labour |
by Gustavo Capdevila , Inter Press Service News Agency
June 15th, 2007
The International Labour Organisation (ILO) expressed profound concern about the persistence of forced labour in Burma, while it is closely monitoring the implementation of a mechanism for victims to file complaints, which was recently agreed with the Southeast Asian country's governing junta.
|IRAQ: Caught in Trafficking |
by David Phinney, Inter Press Service News Agency
June 15th, 2007
A Filipino air conditioner repairman's life was turned upside down when promises of good pay and work in Kuwait were replaced with the harsh realities of corrupt recruiters, horrible living conditions and forced work in Iraq.
|US: Laid-off Circuit City workers allege age bias in suit|
by Molly Selvin and Abigail Goldman, The Los Angeles Times
April 6th, 2007
A lawsuit by three older Circuit City Stores Inc. employees, alleging that the retailer violated California age discrimination laws by laying them off because they were earning too much, is part of a surge in age bias complaints from disgruntled baby boomers.
|CHINA: In Fear Of Chinese Democracy|
by Harold Meyerson, Washington Post
April 4th, 2007
Listen to the apostles of free trade, and you'll learn that once consumer choice comes to authoritarian regimes, democracy is sure to follow. Call it the Starbucks rule: Situate enough Starbucks around Shanghai, and the Communist Party's control will crumble like dunked biscotti.
|US: Fired Wal-Mart worker claims surveillance ops: report|
April 4th, 2007
The Wal-Mart Stores Inc. worker fired last month for intercepting a reporter's phone calls says he was part of a larger, sophisticated surveillance operation that included snooping not only on employees, but also on critics, stockholders and the consulting firm McKinsey & Co., The Wall Street Journal reported.
|CHINA: Businesses help China's government abuse rights|
by Chang Ching-hsi, Taipai Times
February 9th, 2007
Following the onset of reform in 1978, China has become the world's factory. By late February, its foreign exchange reserves had reached a total of US$853.7 billion, surpassing Japan's US$831.6 billion to become the largest in the world.
Meanwhile, the human rights of the Chinese people remain severely restricted.
|US: Lawsuit accuses Connecticut nursery of human trafficking|
by John Christoffersen, Associated Press
February 8th, 2007
A dozen Guatemalan workers filed a federal lawsuit Thursday accusing one of the nation's largest nurseries of engaging in human trafficking by forcing them to work nearly 80 hours per week, paying them less than minimum wage and denying them medical care for injuries on the job.
|US: New Scanners for Tracking City Workers|
by Sewell Chan, New York Times
January 23rd, 2007
The Bloomberg administration is devoting more than $180 million toward state-of-the-art technology to keep track of when city employees come and go, with one agency requiring its workers to scan their hands each time they enter and leave the workplace.
|CHINA: Hundreds of workers protest company beatings
January 5th, 2007
Hundreds of workers yesterday held a protest in Pingshan (Shenzhen) outside DeCoro, an Italian sofa company, accusing supervisors of severely beating three employees who dared to ask for respect of the minimum wage. In November 2005 disputes had already taken place between the employees and the company with mutual accusations of violence made.
|SWEDEN: Low Prices, High Social Costs: The Secrets in Ikea's Closet|
by Olivier Bailly, Jean-Marc Caudron and Denis Lambert, Le Monde Diplomatic
December 29th, 2006
Despite Ikea's current claims, low prices always incur a high social cost. Between 1994 and 1997 three documentaries screened by German and Swedish television accused the firm of using child labor under degrading conditions in Pakistan, India, Vietnam and the Philippines
|US: OSHA Cites Tool Maker|
December 27th, 2006
A West Hartford tool manufacturing plant has been cited for widespread safety and health hazards for the third time in six years by the Hartford office of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the agency said Tuesday.
|US: Noose incident sparks bias suit|
by Collin Nash, Newsday
December 16th, 2006
A group of African-Americans employed as installers for a Cablevision subcontractor filed a discrimination complaint Friday against their employer and the media giant, alleging intimidation by white managers who the workers say dangled a noose from the rafters.
|US: Swift sued over hiring
by Christine Tatum, Denver Post
December 12th, 2006
Eighteen former Swift & Co. employees who worked at the meatpacker's Cactus, Texas, plant have filed a $23 million lawsuit alleging that Swift hired illegal workers to depress employee wages.
|US: Wal-Mart must pay workers $78m|
October 13th, 2006
The world's largest retailer, Wal-Mart, has been ordered to pay at least $78m in compensation to workers who were forced to work during breaks.
|US: Suit Against Wal-Mart Is Narrowed|
August 29th, 2006
A federal judge Monday dismissed civil racketeering claims against Wal-Mart Stores Inc., narrowing the scope of a lawsuit that accused the retailer of knowingly employing illegal immigrants to clean its stores.
|WORLD: Has Coke become the new McDonald's?|
by David Teather, The Guardian (UK)
August 18th, 2006
Welcome to the Coke side of life. Africa's planned legal action is just the latest in a litany of alleged human rights and environmental abuses in developing markets that has made Coca-Cola a cause celebre.
|CHILE: Escondida workers say no progress in talks|
by Raphael Minder in Sydney, Rebecca Bream in London and Paul Harris in Santiago, Financial Times
August 9th, 2006
Striking workers at Chile’s Escondida copper mine, the world’s largest, said on Tuesday night that salary talks with the company failed to produce a deal but they would try again on Wednesday to seek a solution to the conflict.
|US: Widow of Worker Sues Foam Factory|
by Jennifer Delson, The Los Angeles Times
July 27th, 2006
The widow of a factory worker alleges in a lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court that her 36-year-old husband died from long-term exposure to a deadly chemical at the world's largest manufacturer of surfboard blanks.
|US: Guilty Plea in Ralphs Labor Case|
by Cynthia H. Cho, The Los Angeles Times
July 27th, 2006
Ralphs grocery chain formally pleaded guilty Wednesday to felony charges that it illegally rehired locked-out employees during the 2003-04 supermarket labor dispute in Southern and Central California.
|US: Widow of Worker Sues Foam Factory|
by Jennifer Delson, The Los Angeles Times
July 27th, 2006
The widow of a factory worker alleges in a lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court that her 36-year-old husband died from long-term exposure to a deadly chemical at the world's largest manufacturer of surfboard blanks.
|US: Latino, black workers try for unity|
by Darryl Fears , The Washington Post
July 25th, 2006
When she finished eating dinner at the party, Lenora Bruce Bailey sat for a spell on a little wood porch facing Main Street. Two years ago, she had one of the best jobs around, boxing scraps of hog meat at the nearby packing plant. Then she got sick. "They terminated me," she said. "Took away my health insurance."
|UK: Corporate Manslaughter Crackdown Cheers Unions|
by Patrick Wintour, The Guardian
July 20th, 2006
The government will today resolve a long-running internal battle by introducing a corporate manslaughter bill in the Commons, making companies liable for any deaths due to a general breach of the duty of care by the firm.
|US: Jackson Leads Anti-BP March Near Refinery |
The Associated Press
July 5th, 2006
The Rev. Jesse Jackson brought his protest of BP PLC to the site of one of the state's worst refinery accidents Tuesday to speak against what he calls price gouging, discriminatory hiring practices and unsafe working conditions at the company.
|US: The 100 Worst Corporate Citizens|
by Phil Mattera, The Corporate Research Project
July 1st, 2006
For the past 52 years, Fortune magazine has been publishing a list of the largest U.S. corporations, an annual chance for chief executives to brag that "my revenue is bigger than yours." For the past seven years, Business Ethics magazine has issued another kind of ranking -- a list of what it calls the "100 Best Corporate Citizens" -- that promotes virtue over size in the perennial game of corporate comparisons.
|KATRINA: Needing Builders, Gulf City Looks to China|
by Richard Fausset, Los Angeles Times
June 27th, 2006
Frustration over the pace of rebuilding is rampant along the Mississippi Gulf Coast some 10 months after Hurricane Katrina. But in the small city of D'Iberville, leaders are hoping to jump-start construction with an unorthodox solution: importing hundreds, and perhaps thousands, of Chinese laborers to build shopping malls, condominiums and casinos.
|UK: Wal-Mart Faces Asda Workers' Strike|
by Jonathan Birchall and Andrew Taylor, The Financial Times
June 22nd, 2006
Wal-Mart is facing the threat of a potentially damaging strike at Asda, the UK subsidiary that accounts for about 40 per cent of its international sales, in a dispute with one of the country's largest unions over bargaining rights.
|US: Suit Claims Hospitals Fixed Nurses' Pay|
by Steven Greenhouse, The New York Times
June 21st, 2006
Nurses filed class-action lawsuits yesterday against hospitals in Chicago, Memphis, San Antonio and Albany, asserting that the hospitals had violated federal antitrust laws by conspiring to hold down nurses' wages.
|US: WesternGeco Agrees to $19.6 Million Fraud Fine|
by Lynn J. Cook, The Houston Chronicle
June 16th, 2006
A Houston-based subsidiary of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield services company, has agreed to pay $19.6 million in penalties for "knowingly submitting fraudulent visa applications" for foreign workers assigned to vessels operating in the Gulf of Mexico, according to a statement from the U.S. Dept. of Justice.
|US: U.S. Sues Goodyear|
The Chicago Tribune
June 15th, 2006
The Labor Department has sued Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., alleging hiring discrimination against hundreds of women who sought jobs at one of its plants in Virginia in the late 1990s.
|US: Wal-Mart Likes Chicago, But Not City's Wage Plan|
by Gary Washburn, Chicago Tribune
June 13th, 2006
A Wal-Mart official said Monday that his firm could be interested in building "10 or 20" stores on city sites during the next five years, but he added that passage of a minimum wage measure by Chicago's City Council could have a chilling effect on the company's plans.
|GERMANY: Clash with Unions Looms at VW |
by David Gow, Guardian Unlimited (UK)
June 13th, 2006
Volkswagen, Europe's biggest carmaker, is heading for a showdown with its 100,000-strong German workforce after trade unions rejected company proposals to increase the working week to 35 hours without extra pay late on Monday.
|CONGO: Congo's Child Miner Shame |
by Orla Guerin, BBC News
June 12th, 2006
To commemorate World Day Against Child Labour, BBC News has spent a day with child miners in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who work for about one dollar per day. At Ruashi mine, in the Eastern province of Katanga, almost 800 children dig for copper and cobalt.
|US: Fendi sues Wal-Mart over fake handbags|
June 11th, 2006
Italian fashion group Fendi S.R.L. sued Wal-Mart Stores in U.S. federal court on Friday, accusing the world's largest retailer of selling counterfeit handbags and passing them off as genuine at its Sam's Club warehouse stores.
|US: Thrift Faces Labor-Law Suit|
June 7th, 2006
Two law firms representing former employees of Washington Mutual Inc. in California, New York and Illinois have sued the Seattle-based thrift, accusing the company of violating labor laws by failing to pay overtime and the federal minimum wage.
|US: Biggest pension fund boycotts Wal-Mart|
by Terry Macalister, The Guardian
June 7th, 2006
Wal-Mart, the world's biggest retailer and owner of the Asda supermarket chain, is being boycotted by the world's largest pension fund for alleged "serious and systematic" abuses of human and employment rights.
|UK: For England's Army of Migrant Workers, It's Not All Strawberries and Cream|
by John Vidal, The Guardian
June 5th, 2006
When Val Salisbury walked down her Herefordshire lane and into a giant plastic polytunnel where dozens of Ukrainians, Lithuanians and other east Europeans were picking strawberries, the workers were surprised. She was, after all, a 69-year-old Englishwoman using a walking frame. But when she started pulling up the plants all around her and throwing them to the ground, they understood why she was there.
|US: Polo Ralph Lauren Accused of Labor Violations|
Bay City News Service
May 30th, 2006
Four former employees of Polo Ralph Lauren filed a lawsuit today in San Francisco Superior Court against the Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation, alleging that the company repeatedly violated the rights of its employees, according to Patrick Kitchin, a lawyer for the plaintiffs.
|US: Ad Calls for Wal-Mart to Change Principles|
May 23rd, 2006
One of Wal-Mart's most vocal union-funded critics took out a full-page ad in The New York Times on Tuesday calling on the company to live up to the ''moral responsibilities'' of being the world's largest private employer by improving wages and health insurance.
|US: Senate Considers Bill on Mine Safety|
by John Holusha, The New York Times
May 16th, 2006
Legislation that would increase the supplies of oxygen available to miners trapped by explosions, rock falls or other disasters, among other measures, was introduced in the Senate today by two senators from both parties.
|US: The Case Against Coke|
by Michaeil Blanding, The Nation
April 14th, 2006
The Coca-Cola Company will hold its stockholders' meeting, an annual exercise designed to boost the confidence of investors. If the meeting is anything like last year's, however, it may do the opposite.
|US: AFL-CIO puts big CEO pensions under scope|
by Edward Iwata, USA Today
April 7th, 2006
Amid growing concern over a wave of cutbacks in corporate pension plans for employees, the CEOs of top U.S. companies would receive "golden pensions" that range from $2 million to $6.5 million a year, according to a study by the AFL-CIO union federation.
|ARGENTINA: Bolivian Community Divided Over Sweatshops|
by Marcela Valente, Inter Press News Service
April 6th, 2006
The Buenos Aires city government's new offensive against slave labour has resulted in the closure of 30 clandestine textile sweatshops in the Argentine capital. But it has also caused divisions in the Bolivian immigrant community: some denounce the exploitative labour conditions, while others desperately want to keep their jobs, however precarious.
|PHILIPPINES: Missing, despising Marcopper|
by Gerald Gene R. Querubin, Philippine Daily Inquirer
April 6th, 2006
WHEN Marinduque Copper Mining Corp. (Marcopper) stopped its operation in 1997, the municipality of Santa Cruz in Marinduque came to a standstill. Almost 2,500 employees were left jobless, businesses suffered from low sales; some even had to close shop.
|US: Farmers not lovin' tomato-picking pay
April 1st, 2006
The coalition is urging consumers to pressure Oak Brook, Illinois-based McDonald's Corp. to support a campaign to boost wages for more than 3,000 Florida pickers. They're proposing a penny per pound increase in pay.
|US: Chromium Evidence Buried, Report Says|
by Rick Weiss, The Washington Post
February 24th, 2006
Scientists working for the chromium industry withheld data about the metal's health risks while the industry campaigned to block strict new limits on the cancer-causing chemical, according to a scientific journal report published yesterday.
|US: Outsourcing Is Climbing Skills Ladder|
by Steve Lohr, The New York Times
February 16th, 2006
The globalization of work tends to start from the bottom up. The first jobs to be moved abroad are typically simple assembly tasks, followed by manufacturing, and later, skilled work like computer programming. At the end of this progression is the work done by scientists and engineers in research and development laboratories.
|US: Pay Fight in Tech's Trenches
by Elissa Silverman, The Washington Post
February 15th, 2006
The situation casts light on the low-tech backbone of a high-tech project -- the casual laborers who are rounded up by subcontractors, sometimes bused across state borders to job sites and set to work digging ditches. Predominantly Hispanic, they work with few guarantees and often no benefits, and they typically are hesitant to come forward with problems, according to lawyers and advocacy groups.
|US: Sales Brisk for "Wal-Mart" Docu As Accusations Fly
February 15th, 2006
Berlin's European Film Market became the backdrop for yet another verbal battle between Wal-Mart and its filmmaker nemesis Robert Greenwald on Tuesday. The Greenwald-directed film "Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price" made for hot sales but heated words at the market.
|US: For One Clerk, Fight for Wal-Mart Bill Is Personal|
by Mary Otto, Washington Post
January 12th, 2006
The debate over the Fair Share Health Care Fund Act, commonly known as the Wal-Mart bill, has dominated politics in the run-up to the General Assembly, with the retailer arguing that Democrats have unfairly singled out one company and union leaders arguing that workers deserve better treatment.
|US: Fines in mining deaths cut back|
by Thomas Frank, USA Today
January 10th, 2006
The nation's coal mines have been required to pay only a fraction of the federal fines imposed after deadly accidents since 1999, a USA TODAY analysis shows.
|US: Moving Mountains|
by Erik Reece, Orion Magazine
January 9th, 2006
It is the people of Appalachia who pay the highest price for the rest of the country's cheap energy—through contaminated water, flooding, cracked foundations and wells, bronchial problems related to breathing coal dust, and roads that have been torn up and turned deadly by speeding coal trucks.
|US: General Electric workers sue Monsanto over PCBs|
by Carey Gillam, Reuters
January 4th, 2006
More than 500 General Electric Co. employees have sued Monsanto Co. along with two related companies, claiming they were exposed to toxic chemicals manufactured for decades by Monsanto, the company said Wednesday.
|JAPAN: An insider's dark view of Toyota|
by Matt Rusling, Christian Science Monitor
January 2nd, 2006
In 1996, Darius Mehri, a wide-eyed young American engineer, went to Japan to work for Toyota's production system. What he found was an abusive environment where the company controlled every movement - inside and outside work - of its employees.
|ARGENTINA: The War for Gold in Catamarca|
by Darío Aranda, Página 12 Newspaper
December 18th, 2005
Water that is undrinkable. Air that is better left unbreathed. A community impoverished, living above mountains of gold. These are some of the contradictions of Andalgalá, a town of 17,000 inhabitants in Catamarca, Argentina, 240 kilometres from the provincial capital, home for ten years now to the largest gold and copper mine in the country, and one of the largest in the world.
|US: Best Buy Sued for Bias|
by Jason Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle
December 10th, 2005
Six current and former employees of Best Buy filed a race- and sex-discrimination lawsuit Thursday against the consumer electronics chain in federal court in San Francisco, accusing it of denying better-paying sales and managerial jobs to African Americans, Latinos and women in favor of white men.
|LIBERIA: Firestone Sued Over "Slave" Plantation|
by Haider Rizvi, OneWorld.net
December 8th, 2005
Firestone, a multinational rubber manufacturing giant known for its automobile tires, has come under fire from human rights and environmental groups for its alleged use of child labor and slave-like working conditions at a plantation in Liberia.
|US: Immigrants Often Unpaid for Katrina Work
by Justin Pritchard, Associated Press
November 5th, 2005
A pattern is emerging as the cleanup of Mississippi's Gulf Coast morphs into its multibillion-dollar reconstruction: Come payday, untold numbers of Hispanic immigrant laborers are being stiffed.
|TURKEY: Turkish Coke Bottler Under Fire|
by Caroline Wilbert, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
November 3rd, 2005
United Students against Sweatshops held a news conference in Washington on Wednesday, alleging that within the last several months, employees of a Coke bottler in Turkey were fired for joining a union. These workers protested and were allegedly beaten by police at the behest of Coke.
|WORLD: Social audits 'are failing to detect factory abuses'|
by Alison Maitland, The Financial Times
November 2nd, 2005
Social audits of clothing factories in developing countries are failing to detect excessive and forced overtime, abusive treatment of workers and violations of freedom of association, says a report by the Clean Clothes Campaign, a coalition of trade unions and pressure groups, to be published today.
|AFRICA: The Dark Side of Chocolate|
by Kate McMahon, Alternet, Wiretap
October 28th, 2005
The truth behind the chocolate is anything but sweet. On the Ivory Coast of Africa, the origin of nearly half of the world's cocoa, hundreds of thousands of children work or are enslaved on cocoa farms. With poverty running rampant and average cocoa revenues ranging from $30-$108 per household member per year, producers have no choice but to utilize child labor for dangerous farming tasks. Some children, seeking to help their poor families, even end up as slaves on cocoa farms far from home. Slavery drags on and we are paying the slaveholder's wages.
|US: Desperation Deal at GM|
by Robert Kuttner, The Boston Globe
October 22nd, 2005
The United Autoworkers union has agreed to save General Motors over a billion dollars a year in health insurance costs. This is a disguised pay-cut, since workers will now pay more out of pocket for their healthcare.
|CANADA: Tyson plans to restart striking beef plant|
by Ian Cobain and David Leigh, Reuters
October 17th, 2005
Top U.S. meat processor Tyson Foods Inc. said it planned to reopen its massive Canadian plant in Brooks, Alberta on Monday after several tense incidents on a strike picket line last week.
|US: US Companies Lag in Responsibility, Accountability|
by Abid Aslam, OneWorld.net
September 25th, 2005
U.S. companies remain less accountable than European and Asian ones despite recent years' damaging revelations of management chicanery involving finances, labor relations, environmental performance, and consumer protection, a global survey said Friday.
|US: Wal-Mart Accused of Denying Workers' Rights|
by Michael Barbaro, The Washington Post
September 14th, 2005
An American labor rights group filed a class-action lawsuit yesterday against Wal-Mart Stores Inc., alleging that suppliers in five countries violated workers' rights, including denying a minimum wage, requiring overtime and punishing union activity.
|INDIA: Japanese Investors Learn Indian Labour Laws the Hard Way|
by Ranjit Devraj, Inter Press Service
August 3rd, 2005
Japanese investors in India took a few hard lessons in India's tough labour laws when the automobile giant Honda Motors tamely resumed production at its plant outside the national capital this week, ending three months of labour disputes, including pitched battles between police and agitated workers.
|US: Wal-Mart Is Focal Point Of Democrats' Health Bill|
by By Amy Joyce, Washington Post
June 23rd, 2005
Several congressional Democrats introduced a bill that would force states to report the names of companies that have 50 or more employees who receive government-funded health care, an effort to pressure Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in particular to improve employee health coverage.
|WORLD: Globalization: It's Not Just Wages
by Louis Uchitelle, New York Times
June 17th, 2005
Globalization is often viewed as a rootless process of constantly moving jobs to low-wage countries. But the issue is more complex, as illustrated by Whirlpool's worldwide operations. What attracts Mr. Fettig and other chief executives is a relatively new form of globalization that emphasizes first-rate centers of production and design in various countries - including the United States.
|WORLD: A Responsible Balancing Act |
June 1st, 2005
Public expectations of companies are rising everywhere - but consumers' top concerns vary substantially between countries and regions, according to a new study by GlobeScan, an international opinion research company.
|FINLAND: Strike Shuts Paper Mills|
May 31st, 2005
Finns are hoarding toilet rolls as a strike in the paper industry - already in its third week - threatens to go on until the end of June.
|US: BP Admits Workers Were Not Root Cause of Blast
by Anne Belli, Houston Chronicle
May 31st, 2005
Union officials have said they expressed concerns about the location of the trailer as well as BP's use of the vent stack as opposed to a flare system. Had a flare been in place, the excess liquid and vapors likely would have been burned off and the accident may have been prevented.
|US: Teamsters Picket L.A. Coke Plants|
by Nancy Cleeland and Erica Williams, LA Times
May 24th, 2005
Teamster drivers, packers and warehouse workers walked picket lines at all seven Coca- Cola Enterprises Inc. bottling plants in the L.A. area in a dispute over wages and rising health insurance costs.
|US: New Report on CEO Earnings|
by John Burton and Christian Weller, Center for American Progress
May 23rd, 2005
A report form the Center for American Progress details how Corporate CEOs have enjoyed record levels of compensation and corporations have seen record profits, as more and more middle-class Americans are experiencing stagnant wages and vanishing benefits.
|US: Teflon Target|
by Chris Serres, Star Tribune
May 22nd, 2005
For years, Target has cultivated an image of itself as the "anti-Wal-Mart," a retailer that refuses to sacrifice workplace standards in the pursuit of higher sales and stock prices. But now, after a decade of meteoric growth at both Target and Wal-Mart, labor groups say the two retailers are no longer very different in the way they treat their workers.
|US: Cleaning Up The Laundry Industry
by Mary Beth Maxwell, TomPaine.com
May 17th, 2005
Earlier this month, hundreds of hospitals and the patients they serve came close to working without clean linens. A strike was threatened and postponed but still looms because of ongoing contract negotiations and labor disputes between the nation’s largest hospital laundry supplier, Angelica Textile Services, and its employees
|CHINA: Corporate Social Responsibility|
May 13th, 2005
Today, China is probably more integrated into the international community than at any point in its history, and the competitive economic landscape is changing rapidly. For multinational companies that take social and environmental responsibilities seriously, unprecedented opportunities abound for them to turn the corporate social responsibility (CSR) fad into a real opportunity for social change.
|US: Memphis '68, Revisited|
by Si Kahn, AlterNet
May 6th, 2005
With help from some unlikely places, Corrections Corporation of America is hoping to build the largest for-profit private prison in the United States.
|CANADA: Closure of First Unionized Wal-Mart Sends Signal|
by Paul Weinberg, IPS
May 1st, 2005
Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, may be violating international and Canadian laws by using covert strategies to undermine a unionising drive at its Canadian stores, say labour experts and union activists.
|MALAYSIA: Workers to March Against Privatization|
by Anil Netto, IPS
April 29th, 2005
Malaysia's workers will mark International Labor Day on May 1 with a strong protest against globalisation, which they feel is gradually eroding away their rights and making poor Malaysians poorer.
|EL SALVADOR: Fraying of the Textile Industry|
by Ginger Thompson, New York Times
March 25th, 2005
Employment in El Salvador's garment industry declined in 2004 for the first time in a decade. Thousands more jobs will be lost this year, threatening to drive up El Salvador's largest export to the United States: its people.
|US: Taco Bell, farm workers reach agreement|
by Brett Barrouguere, Associated Press
March 8th, 2005
Taco Bell will pay an extra penny for each pound of tomatoes it buys under an agreement with a group of farm workers that had been protesting the fast food chain for three years.
|CAMBODIA: Police Open Fire to End Factory Protest
by Ek Madra, Reuters
February 22nd, 2005
Cambodian riot police fired assault rifles and used electric batons on Tuesday to break up a protest by 1,300 workers demanding redundancy payment from a garment factory that shut down in January.
|WORLD: The Rise of the Micro-Multinationals|
by By Jim Hopkins, USA Today
February 11th, 2005
Nearly 40% of start-ups in a new USA TODAY study employ engineers, marketers, analysts and others in jobs created in India and other nations. The study found that many U.S. start-ups, speeding the pace of globalization, now bypass the USA for nations where customers and cheap labor are plentiful.
|US: Towns Hand Out Tax Breaks, Then Cry Foul as Jobs Leave|
by Timothy Egan, New York Times
October 20th, 2004
After a decade of tax breaks and union concessions to keep the company in a place that has been making refrigerators for more than 50 years, Maytag closed its factory last month, terminating 1,600 jobs. Maytag may be done with Galesburg, but Galesburg is not done with Maytag.
|NIGERIA: Fuel Price Strike Suspended|
by Staff Writers, afrol News
October 14th, 2004
Nigeria's trade union now gives the government two weeks to reduce fuel prices while temporarily calling off the nation-wide strike. Negotiations between trade union leaders and the federal government started today, after trade unions during four days have demonstrated their power to cause an almost complete stand-still throughout the country.
|AUSTRALIA: Unions Take Hardie Asbestos Protest to U.S.|
by Barbara Adam, Bloomberg
September 15th, 2004
Australian labor unions will take their protest over James Hardie Industries NV's funding shortfall for asbestos victims to the U.S. today, seeking to extend their boycott of the company's building products to its largest market.
|US: Implored to 'Offshore' More
by Paul Blustein, Washington Post
July 2nd, 2004
A report by an influential consulting firm is exhorting U.S. companies to speed up "offshoring" operations to China and India, including high-powered functions such as research and development.
|IRAQ: Many Foreign Laborers Receive Inferior Pay, Food and Shelter|
by Ariana Eunjung Cha, The Washington Post
July 1st, 2004
The war in Iraq has been a windfall for Kellogg Brown & Root Inc., the company that has a multibillion-dollar contract to provide support services for U.S. troops. Its profits have come thanks to the hard work of people like Dharmapalan Ajayakumar, who until last month served as a kitchen helper at a military base.
|US: Probe into Iraq trafficking claims|
by Elise Labott, CNN
May 5th, 2004
The United States is investigating reports Indian nationals were victims of human trafficking to Iraq and mistreated while working there as contractors in U.S. military camps, the State Department has said.
|Yo No Quiero Taco Bell: Farmworker Struggles and the Legacy of Cï¿½sar Chavez|
by Catherine Cunningham and Sean Sellers, CommonDreams.org
March 21st, 2004
In Immokalee, Florida, the situation is dire. South Florida is the nation's leading producer of fresh tomatoes. Taco Bell is a major purchaser of Florida tomatoes. Their enormous purchasing power gives them a unique opportunity to intervene on behalf of farm workers who subsidize corporate profits with sweatshop tomatoes.
|China: Workers Demand Wages, Security|
by Eva Cheng, Green Left Weekly
March 3rd, 2004
Some 2000 workers and their retired counterparts from the Tieshu textile factory in Suizhou, Hubei province, staged an angry protest on February 8 denouncing the now-defunct plants management for cheating workers of savings and benefits. They also accuse management of corruption.
|Farmworkers March for Living Wage|
February 26th, 2004
Food First Joins the 2004 Taco Bell Truth Tour: March, Organized by the Coalition of Immokalee Workers, Demands Humane Working Conditions for Farmworkers
|India: The Dark Side of the Outsourcing Revolution|
by Naeem Mohaiemen, AlterNet
January 25th, 2004
India is at the red-hot center of the Outsourcing Revolution. Thirty percent of all new Information Technology (IT) work for U.S. companies is now done abroad, mostly in India. Analysts forecast that by 2008 Indian IT services and back-office support will grow to a $57 billion a year industry with four million workers.
|US: Nike on Trial|
by Jim Hightower, Alternet
July 22nd, 2003
The world's largest maker of athletic shoes and clothing swooshed into the U.S. Supreme Court last year arrogantly asserting a corporate right to lie. At issue is a 1998 case brought by a lone consumer activist named Marc Kasky. He claimed in California state courts that Nike had engaged in false advertising when it launched a PR campaign to fight off the charges that it was a global abuser of sweatshop labor.
|US: Up Against Wal-Mart|
by Karen Olsson, Mother Jones Magazine
April 28th, 2003
At the world's largest and most profitable retailer, low wages, unpaid overtime, and union busting are a way of life. Now Wal-Mart workers are fighting back.
|US: Bush Top Gun vs. S.F. Activist|
by Zachary Coile, San Francisco Chronicle
April 24th, 2003
WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration's top Supreme Court lawyer urged the high court Wednesday to toss out a San Francisco consumer activist's suit against Nike Inc. because it could discourage corporations from defending themselves in public against their critics.
|IRAQ: For Bangladeshis, War's End Means Return to Jobs|
by Qurratul Ain Tahmina, Inter Press Service
April 8th, 2003
Ninety percent of the yearly average of documented 200,000 migrant workers from mainly Muslim Bangladesh is placed in Middle Eastern countries. Remittance from migrant workers in the Middle East comes to about one-fifth of Bangladesh's yearly import payments. Last year Bangladesh got $2.5 billion in remittances, 75 percent of it from workers in the Middle East.
|US: Family Farm Organizations Endorse Taco Bell boycott|
Coalition of Imokalee Workers
March 19th, 2003
In what is a natural -- but all too rare -- partnership, farmworkers and family farmers have joined forces in the battle against the corporate domination and consolidation of agriculture, as several family farm organizations have endorsed the Taco Bell boycott!
|BRAZIL: Weakened Trade Unions Look to Lula for Help|
by Mario Osava, Inter Press Service
March 12th, 2003
Trade unions proliferated in Brazil from 1991 to 2001, but their power did not keep in step, says a report that is fuelling debate now that the nation's president is a man was a unionist himself, former metalworker Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
|USA: Levis is Lone Hold Out in Saipan Suit|
by Victor Narro, Sweatshop Watch
March 3rd, 2003
This month, an important event is taking place that should change the lives of workers on Saipan, an island in the U.S. Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and impact the way we address issues of sweatshop throughout the world.
|MEXICO: Toll of Murdered Young Women Tops 300|
by Diego Cevallos, IPS
February 20th, 2003
Three more young women were added this week to the list of over 300 like them who since 1993 have been murdered and mutilated in the border city of Ciudad Juarez.
|EL SALVADOR: World Trade Body Ignores Union Appeals Over Treatment of Workers|
by Marty Logan, OneWorld US
February 6th, 2003
The World Trade Organization praised El Salvador Wednesday for taking steps to open up its economy, but ignored a damning report from a global grouping of trade unions that accuses the country of dismissing workers' rights, particularly in export processing zones (EPZs), known locally as 'maquilas.'
|US: Shooting the Messinger -- Report on Layoffs Killed|
by David Lazarus, San Francisco Chronicle
January 3rd, 2003
The Bush administration, under fire for its handling of the economy, has quietly killed off a Labor Department program that tracked mass layoffs by U.S. companies.
|WORLD: Labor Dispute at the WTO|
by Andrew Casey, Labour News Network
November 21st, 2002
Staff employed by the World Trade Organisation have begun an industrial campaign against their bosses over a salary dispute. WTO staff met last week and unanimously decided that the Staff Council should formulate a strong action plan which would steadily escalate.
|ARGENTINA: Workers Take Factories into Their Own Hands|
by Pablo Waisberg, Latin America Press
November 21st, 2002
Last December, overwhelmed by debt and the countrys economic chaos, the Brukman brothers left their high-end suit factory in Buenos Aires and never returned. They also left more than 100 employees awaiting back pay.
|BRAZIL: Debt Takes Precedence Over War on Child Labor|
by Ricardo de Bittencourt, InterPress Service
November 20th, 2002
Child labor has not yet been eradicated in Brazil due to cutbacks in social spending aimed at ensuring payments on the foreign debt, Social Watch, an international network linking non-governmental organisations from 60 countries, said Wednesday.
|WORLD: Law to Protect Migrant Workers Short One Vote|
by Thalif Deen, Inter Press Service
October 22nd, 2002
A United Nations convention aimed at protecting the rights of migrant workers worldwide needs to be ratified by only one more country before it becomes international law.
|USA: Bush Intervenes in Port Lockout|
by Andrea Shalal-Esa, Reuters
October 7th, 2002
President Bush took the first step on Monday toward forcing an end to a lockout at West Coast ports, citing concerns about the fragile U.S. economy, but top Democrats and union officials blasted the move as heavy-handed and demonstrating anti-labor bias.
|US: Dockworker Lockout Shuts Down West Coast|
by George Raine and Carolyn Lochhead, San Francisco Chronicle
October 3rd, 2002
West Coast dockworkers and the shippers who employ them agreed to federal mediation Wednesday, providing a glimmer of hope in the bitter labor lockout that has paralyzed trade at 29 ports from Seattle to San Diego.
|US: Sweatshop Case Settles for $20M|
by Alexei Oreskovic, The Recorder
September 27th, 2002
Three overseas sweatshop lawsuits involving dozens of the United States' largest retailers and a 30,000-member class of garment workers have settled for $20 million.
|USA: What About Corporate Terrorism?|
by David Moberg, Newsday
August 23rd, 2002
Until 1998 Sherri Bufkin happily worked as a manager for Smithfield Foods in Tar Heel, N.C. But in 1997, when workers in the giant meatpacking plant there began to organize a union, her superiors - she has testified - forced her to join their campaign to "do whatever was necessary to keep [the union] out."
|Burkina Faso: Thousands March Against Privatisation and for Higher Wages|
UN Integrated Regional Information Networks
July 18th, 2002
Thousands of workers went on strike on Thursday and marched through the main streets of Burkina Faso's capital, Ouagadougou, to protest against privatisations and to press demands for salary increases. The procession and strike were organised by the country's trade unions.
|WORLD: New Survey Shows 2001 Grim for Trade Unions|
by Jim Lobe, OneWorld US
June 18th, 2002
Labor unions around the world faced a difficult year in 2001 due both to direct and sometimes violent repression, as well as the continuing pursuit by major multinational corporations of cheap labor in poor countries, according to the latest in a series of annual reports by the Brussels-based International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU).
|Football Dreams Stitched with Children's Hands|
Global March Against Child Labour
May 30th, 2002
Child labour and highly unfair labour conditions for adult stitchers in the football industry are still common practices, despite the fact that the contracts between FIFA and sporting goods companies promise the opposite. This was revealed by the Global March Against Child Labour in a presentation of three new reports on China, India and Pakistan.
|Taiwan: Workers Link Cancer to RCA Plant|
by Matthew Yi, San Francisco Chronicle
May 24th, 2002
While many laud the globalization of technology as a positive force that spreads the wealth and helps industry grow, a group of Taiwanese workers came to Silicon Valley Thursday to tell a different story.
|US: Prisoners Go to Work for Dell|
by Drew Cullen, The Register (UK)
May 19th, 2002
Dell rose to the top by cutting more corners than its rivals. The PC giant is cutting another corner by employing prisoners to handle its new consumer recycling scheme in the US.
|US: Court Says Nike Must Defend its PR|
by Harriet Chiang, San Francisco Chronicle
May 3rd, 2002
The California Supreme Court delivered a stiff warning to businesses Thursday, ruling that a San Francisco man can sue Nike Inc. for false advertising for allegedly lying about working conditions at Asian factories where its athletic shoes and clothes are made.