Friday, March 27, 2015

Blog #6: Human Rights Abuses in Cambodian Garment Factories

The Human Rights Watch interviewed 270 garment workers in Cambodia and concluded that Cambodian women faced numerous human rights abuses while working in the garment factories. While it is mostly women in the factories, the Human Rights Watch found 11 factories that used child labor and were in violation of local and international laws. In Cambodia, children under 18 can only engage in light work and for no more than 8 hours a day. The children get paid less than the minimum wage of $80 a month and some were missing school to help their families. The garment industry generates more than $5.7 billion U.S. dollars a year in global exports. The Cambodian women work long hours for little pay in suboptimal conditions. They are sometimes refused bathroom breaks, get no sick leave, and suffer sexual abuse from their male bosses. The workers complained that they were only paid $80 U.S. dollars and did not receive overtime pay for their long hours of work.
            Many big name brands use these kinds of factories to make their clothes. Some of those brands include Gap and Nike, however they were reluctant to disclose this information because that would allow Cambodian government officials to inspect the factories. I feel as though these factories should be inspected monthly, maybe even weekly, to ensure the workers are being treated fairly. These brands should protect the workers rights through all the supply chains but it rarely happens. The workers need to be treated fairly, giving them the necessary breaks for the length of time they work. There is no reason that any of them need to be treated this poorly.

Emily Burris

2:45 pm


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