Samsung violates Chinese workers’ rights, report says

Samsung violates Chinese workers’ rights, report says

NEW YORK - Agence France-Presse
Samsung violates Chinese workers’ rights, report says

Flags wave outside the Suzhou Samsung Electronics Company in Suzhou China yesterday. Samsung is accused of overworking its employees at its Chinese plants.

Samsung forces employees at its Chinese factories to work up to five times the legal overtime limit, bans them from sitting down and denies basic labor rights, according to a U.S.-based watchdog.

According to China Labor Watch’s probe of eight factories, the South Korean electronics giant is guilty of widespread “legal and inhumane violations.”

These include forcing workers at the Tianjin Samsung Mobile Display factory to put in as many as 189 hours of overtime in a month, when the legal limit is 36 hours, according to a report released in New York.

Employees at the factories, making consumer products including cell phones, televisions, and refrigerators, regularly stand for 11 to 12 hours while working at a frantic pace, the 122-page report said.

For example, employees at the Suzhou Samsung Electronics Company facility have to assemble a nearly meter long panel and install two screws every nine seconds, while workers at Tianjin Intops, a supply factory, have to assemble a cell phone case every five seconds.

If workers wish to complain about mistreatment, they have no one to turn to, the report said.

“Workers lack any effective grievance channel by which to rectify these transgressions,” China Labor Watch said.

The group probed six Samsung factories and two Samsung supplier plants by sending undercover investigators and interviewing employees outside the workplace.

There was no immediate response from Samsung. However, the Seoul-based corporation earlier on Sept. 5 responded to a separate report from China Labor Watch alleging that children under the age of 16 are employed at a supplier, HEG Electronics in Huizhou.

Samsung said it would inspect its nearly 250 Chinese partners.