Samsung Criticised Over Chinese Factory Work Conditions
Samsung has come under renewed pressure over the working conditions at Chinese factories supplying it with components and assembly services.
The company recently said that it had addressed issues raised by China Labor Watch concerning one factory, operated by HEG, although Samsung denied the claims that there were underage workers there.
China Labor Watch (CLW) has now released a report into eight more Samsung directly-operated and supplier factories throughout China. These factories, together employing over 20,000 workers, manufacture electronics and related parts for Samsung.
Conducting investigations from May to August 2012, CLW claims to have uncovered a long list of labour abuses in these 8 factories, including but not limited to well over 100 hours of forced overtime work per month, unpaid work, standing for 11 to 12 hours while working, underage workers, a lack of worker safety, and verbal and physical abuse.
Moreover, workers lack of any effective internal grievance channel by which to rectify these transgressions.
According to the human rights group, one of the worst violators is a supplier factory called Tianjin Intops, which employs about 1,200 workers, almost all of whom are female dispatch workers. Here, workers must work standing for 11 hours per day, assembling one cell phone casing every 5 seconds. During peak seasons, they must work up to 150 hours of overtime per month, where the legal limit is 36 hours.
On the factory floor, for no apparent reason, workers are not allowed to wear shoes. Foremen are verbally abusive, and when these young women leave the factory, security guards will often berate them.
The group has called on Samung to address the issues it has raised.
Samsung says that it has a zero-tollerance policy to under age working and is currently carrying out checks on its Chinese suppliers. The internal review is due to be completed later this month.