Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Workers wanting to work

Taiwanese factories in Dongguan [a city between Hong Kong and Guangzhou and a major centre of manufacturing] are facing a problem. According to a news report in the United Daily in Taiwan, over a thousand workers at a factory, which produces goods for big brand names such as Nike, demonstrated for two days and damaged equipment and factory cars. 500 armed police arrived and quashed the riot. Several leaders were arrested. The main cause for the riot was the limitation [sic] on working hours at the factory. The shorter hours have been requested by US companies so as to avoid criticism from various groups on long working hours. However, the mainly migrant workforce want to work longer hours so they can earn more. Consensus had been reached by the US companies, the Taiwanese-invested factory and local government that the maximum working hours per week should be set at 60 hours [which is still a breach of Chinese Labour Law, but less than other manufacturing plants]. However, this reduction in hours was unsatisfactory for the workers and the resulting riot was serious [emphasis added].

Whole thing here. [Hat tip: MR]

3 comments:

Dan said...

An amazing story...
Further proof that the so-called "anti-sweatshop" movement is really about protectionism and elitism.
"We're gonna tell you how long you can work and in what conditions, because we know better than you! Not that we ever worked or had to support a family..."

Dan said...

Can someone PLEASE send this to CSSN?????

In Lerner said...

Well put, Dan: "the socalled "anti-sweatshop" movement is really about protectionism and elitism."

As for government spoilers: "Warren Harding is the only president in American history who actually brought about massive cuts in government spending, producing nearly a 40 per cent saving over Wilsonian peacetime expenditure. Harding believed that America’s matchless society was the creation of voluntarism and that only government could spoil it."
---Modern Times by Paul Johnson