M4 – Misty Karella

How can you justify the role of “sweatshops” after reading the article? 

According to the article, the justification for “sweatshops” is that these companies actually provide a wage that is significantly higher compared to the rest of the country (i.e. in Haiti and Nicaragua, the wage offered is between 700-800% higher than the national average….which is huge!).  These workers are provided a “better” quality of life, because without these jobs, they could be forced into prostitution or have no jobs at all.

The companies also bring in more technology and physical capital into the country, introducing the country and people to globalization and different lifestyles.  Eventually, as the capital accumulates, and the standard of living and skills for these people raise, then more sweatshops will open and the companies will be competing for workers.  This will eventually allow for better wages and working conditions and its all because of the “sweatshops”.

Do some research and read at least one other article(s) with the opposing view.  What are the arguments against sweatshops?

Some of the arguments against sweatshops include:

  • “Sweatshops pay low wages and subject workers to harsh conditions”
  • “Sweatshops use child labor”
  • “Sweatshops are coercive environments”
  • “Sweatshops destroy local cultures and exploit developing nations”

http://oneminute.rationalmind.net/sweatshops/

What should large conglomerates do regarding the use of “sweatshops?”

One of the ways these companies could do is to adhere to the “Accord on Fire and Building Safety”.  When the Rana Plaza Building collapsed in 2013, over 70 companies signed up for the accord, ensuring the public that they are buying their clothes from places that minimally adhere to these standards, so that workers were provided safe working conditions.

Companies should also role out a plan that indicates that they will Implement incremental changes every year; such as increases to wages and benefits.  They should also advertise the fact they are doing this.  More and more people are “aware” of where there clothing is coming from, so buying from a company that supports developing nations in a healthy way would boost stock…which would eventually lead to more benefits to the “sweatshop workers”.

http://blogs.sps.ed.ac.uk/jwi/2013/11/24/how-sweatshops-benefit-workers-and-why-they-are-unjust/

http://content.time.com/time/business/article/0,8599,1115508,00.html

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