Reports of Sweatshops of Nike and Adidas using child labor are well known to all, and the concentration of most of the manufacturing work of the world in china due to it’s cheap labor is a major factor behind growth of business in China. A website on National Labor Committee has reported the kind of exploitation of teenage labor that goes in the MS factory at KYE Systems Corp, Dongguan City, Guangdong, what’s fun for us is a big suffering for some.
The cut-throat price cut war amongst consoles, to keep running ahead in hardware sales and also maintain profitability is a big challenge for companies where such instances of exploitation of laborers is bound to creep up, these teenage workers are forced to work in inhumane conditions, where they work in in a 15 hour shift six to seven days a week, being paid just 65 cents per hour.
They are not allowed to talk to each other, or listen to music, attending nature’s call during work hours, forced to sleep in a 14 people room in large numbers and shower with sponge and a small bucket of water. The KYE management disagrees to these reports and says it is compliant to China Labor law’s while the workers in the factory feel Microsoft does not have anything to do with their plight, but it is the company management that is responsible for their condition, the air conditioning facility within the facility is also kept operational during a buyer visit.
These teenagers employed by KYE Systems Corp are in the age group of 16 and 17 years they make Microsoft products like MS Mouse,“We are like prisoners,” one worker said. “It seems like we live only to work. We do not work to live. We do not live a life, only work.” other companies outsourcing work to KYE also include Hewlett Packard, Best Buy, Samsung, Foxconn, Acer, Wi/IFC/Logitech and Asus-Rd, workers at the company say Microsoft is a major client for them.
No wonder as per the stats posted on the NLC website there is clear trend of increasing concentration of manufacturing work moving out of the US to cheap labor countries where US has witnessed a drop of 33.2% manufacturing jobs in the last decade, i hope the bosses at Redmond would have taken note of this, would act to bring a check on this inhumane act and bring some relif to the workers only if they are really concerned about their corporate image.