TIANJIN, China – Samsung has been accused of labor infractions at several of its factories in China by the activist group China Labor Watch.
The report, based on investigations from May to August 2012, has revealed severe worker abuse in eight of Samsung’s directly-operated and supplier factories including those at Tianjin, Weihai, Huizhou, Shenzhen and Suzhou. It is not the first time large manufacturers are accused of such, with Apple this year having faced major criticism over workers’ condition at the Foxconn factories, where iPhone and iPad devices are made.
Accusations include those of over 100 hours of forced overtime work per month for workers, standing for 11 to 12 hours while working, underage workers and a lack of worker safety. Verbal and physical abuse, age and gender discrimination and abuse of student and labor dispatch workers have also been reported in addition to the lack of effective internal grievance channels.
The supplier factory at Tianjin is known to be the worst violator, where workers have to work standing for 11 hours each day. Forced overtime work for up to 150 hours per month during peak seasons is well above the legal limit of 36 hours. Verbally abusive foremen and guards are known to berate young women who constitute a major part of the work force.
In response, Samsung has announced that it has outlined an action plan to conduct field audits at 249 supplier sites in China and take corrective actions if any labor policy violations are found.