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CorpWatch Exclusives

Robertson Winery Accused Of Slavery-Like Practices In South Africa
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
November 4th, 2016
"Bitter Grapes—Slavery in the Vineyards," a new television documentary made by Danish journalist Tom Heinemann, alleges that many South African wineries pay their workers less than the legal minimum wage; discourages them from unionizing; and exposes them to toxic pesticides. Top of the list is Robertson's Winery.

Cyrela, Rio Olympic Construction Contractor, Accused Of Mistreating Workers
by Richard SmallteacherSpecial to CorpWatch
August 5th, 2016
Media attending the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro are being housed in apartments constructed by workers "in conditions analogous to slavery" by Cyrela, the largest real estate company in Brazil. The local community has also complained that the construction has ruined the water supply and destroyed forested areas.

East European Shoe Factories Often Pay Below Minimum Wage, Says New Report
by Richard SmallteacherSpecial to CorpWatch
June 22nd, 2016
Shoes labeled "Made in Europe" are often assembled in poor East European countries for 'starvation wages' according to a new research report from the Change Your Shoes campaign. The companies whose labor practices were examined include Ara, Bata, Deichmann, Geox, Leder & Schuh AG, Lowa and Zara.

Garment Factories In Burma Often Violate Labor Laws
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
March 28th, 2016
A new report on garment factories in Burma issued by Action Labor Rights (ALR) estimates that nearly a third of workers were required to work 60 hours or more a week, with almost two thirds reporting that they had no choice in the matter.

China Cracks Down On Guangdong Labor Activists
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
December 28th, 2015
Seven activists in Guangdong province, a key manufacturing hub in China, have been detained in a major crackdown on labor rights organizers. The arrests follow a steep rise in protests and strikes at factories that have long exploited migrant workers from rural areas with low pay and working conditions.

Retailer SportsDirect Accused of Sweatshop Like Conditions in the UK
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
June 1st, 2015
SportsDirect, a British sports merchandise retailer, has been accused of employing workers in sweatshop like conditions by Channel Four Dispatches, a UK TV program. The broadcaster aired undercover footage shot by a reporter at the company’s Shirebrook warehouse in northern England.

Australian “Free Range” Chicken Company Alleged to Use Exploited Labor
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
May 11th, 2015
Baiada, one of Australia’s biggest poultry producers, has been accused of using labor contractors that under pay and exploit foreign visitors on temporary work permits. The company sells Steggles and Lilydale Free Range Chickens to supermarket and fast food chains like Aldi, Coles, KFC and Woolworths.

UNIQLO, Japanese Fast Fashion Label, Accused of Labor Violations
by Mayu ChangCorpWatch Blog
April 13th, 2015
Chinese factories in Dongguan and Guangzhou that supply UNIQLO - a “fast fashion” label owned by Fast Retailing Co. from Japan - have been accused of endangering their workers’ lives, according to a new report from Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior (SACOM), a Hong-Kong based labor rights group.

Florida Tomato Pickers Sign Up New Major Retail Chains For Higher Wages
by Fatima HansiaCorpWatch Blog
March 10th, 2015
The Fresh Market, a major U.S. retail chain, recently joined the Coalition of Immokalee Workers’ Fair Food Program, adding another victory in the battle for humane working conditions for tomato pickers in Florida’s $650 million industry. Thirteen companies including Burger King, McDonald's and Walmart have signed up so far.

Brazilian Truth Commission Alleges Volkswagen Had Ties To Former Military Junta
by Nicolas KrotzCorpWatch Blog
January 26th, 2015
Volkswagen's subsidiary in Brazil has been accused of providing material support for torture conducted by the military dictatorship during its 21 year reign from 1964 to 1985. Details of the role of the German car manufacturer emerged in the final report of a national Truth Commission issued last month.

Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct: Alma's Story
by Chris ThompsonSpecial to CorpWatch
January 13th, 2015
When Alma Aranda tried to exercise her legal right to take unpaid time off to care for her dying mother, Verizon harassed her with so much paperwork that her hair fell out. In a new CorpWatch investigation into federal contractors who violate workers rights, Chris Thompson tells her story.

Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct: Calvin's Story
by Chris ThompsonSpecial to CorpWatch
January 11th, 2015
Calvin Bryant was crippled in a Imperial Sugar plant explosion in Savannah, Georgia, that also killed 14 of his co-workers. In a new CorpWatch investigation into federal contractors who win millions in government business despite violating workers rights, Chris Thompson tells his story.

Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct: Rodney's Story
by Chris ThompsonSpecial to CorpWatch
January 9th, 2015
Rodney Bridgett was killed when a piece of Tyson Foods’ heavy equipment crushed him at the company's beef processing plant in Sioux City, Iowa. In a new CorpWatch investigation into federal contractors who win millions in government business despite violating workers rights, Chris Thompson tells his story.

Subsidizing Contractor Misconduct
by Chris ThompsonSpecial to CorpWatch
January 7th, 2015
Every year, the U.S. government awards billions of dollars in federal contracts to companies who routinely violate basic legal rights of workers. This new report profiles three individuals who were harmed by Imperial Sugar, Tyson Foods and Verizon and explains a new presidential order that could help reduce abuses. An investigative report by Chris Thompson

Indian Rose Exporter Declares Bankruptcy in the Netherlands
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
October 2nd, 2014
A subsidiary of Karaturi Global, the Indian flower export multinational accused of land grabbing in Ethiopia and Kenya, has been declared bankrupt by a Dutch court. The company owes some $300,000 in the Netherlands, as well as upwards of $4 million in taxes in Kenya.

Amazon Workers in Germany Strike for Better Pay
by Richard SmallteacherCorpWatch Blog
September 23rd, 2014
Some 2,000 German employees of Amazon, the internet retail giant, walked off their jobs this week at four sites - Bad Hersfeld, Graben, Leipzig and Rheinberg. The strike action was coordinated by Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft (United Services Union), a Berlin trade union commonly known as Ver.di.

Migrant Rights Activist Fights Thai Pineapple Company Lawsuit
by Pratap Chatterjee
September 12th, 2014
Natural Fruit, one of Thailand’s largest pineapple processors, has sued Andy Hall, a British researcher, over a report that he worked on for Finnwatch on labor abuses in the industry. Hall faces some seven years in jail and $10 million in fines.

Yue Yuen Shoe Factory Backs Down After Workers Strike for Pensions
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
May 3rd, 2014
Some 40,000 workers in seven Yue Yuen shoe factories in Dongguan city, China, went on strike last month to successfully demand that their employer make pension payments required under the law.

Anglo American Workers Strike Against Contract Labor Conditions in Chile
by Pratap ChatterjeeCorpWatch Blog
March 25th, 2014
Some 4,000 contract workers at Los Bronces copper mine in Chile went on strike against Anglo American, a UK-based mining multinational from South Africa. The strike is the latest in a series of protests against the Chilean copper industry, the world’s largest producers of the metal.

Fast Food Workers File Lawsuit Against McDonald’s for Alleged Wage Theft
by Fatima HansiaCorpWatch Blog
March 21st, 2014
Over 25,000 low-wage employees working at McDonald’s franchises in California, Michigan and New York are being systematically cheated of their wages, say attorneys who filed seven simultaneous lawsuits last week against McDonald’s and its franchisees for violations of labor law.

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