Sweatshop, the word itself conjures up ideas of children toiling away for endless
hours for endless pay, but that is in foreign countries far away from us. It is easy to not
think about the fates of others. I started reading about sweatshops for this essay and was
appalled by what I read. Girls as young as fourteen working seventy hours a week for
less than a dollar an hour. Limited to only two bathroom brakes a day and docked a
days pay for every visit thereafter. Management forcing employees to take pregnancy
tests and firing the positive test takers. Sexual harassment, racism, and poor working
conditions all things that could be easily controlled.
I think that companies who subcontract goods from sweatshops should be boycotted
because of the racism, the sexual harassment, the poor working conditions, the
substandard pay, the exploitation of children, and to tell evil corporations that we
simply do not agree with what they are doing.
This boycotting of companies may already be working, according to Rachel Shabi,
writer for New Statesmen magazine â€œGap feeling the heat from anti-sweatshop
campaigns? The clothes chain's announcement a few weeks ago of a 68 per cent drop in
executive officer, Millard Drexler, described 2001 as being Gap's "most difficult year
ever"(23). Shabi goes on to state that â€œThe Gap brand has been so persistently targeted
by campaigners that it has become practically synonymous with "sweatshop labor" â€“
the practice of subcontracting the manufacture of goods to developing-world factories
where low pay and workplace abuses, such as child labor, poor safety,
sexual and physical harassment and hostility to unions, are commonplaceâ€(23).
Have you purchased a pair a Nike shoes lately? The price of shoes have increased
since I was in high school, a hundred and fifty dollars for the new Jordans.