Sweatshops date back to as far as the 16th century, but were first exposed in Britain in 1889. Around the 1830s-1840s, immigrants started coming to the United States and organized sweatshops in tenement buildings. Despite poor health problems and disease from the harsh conditions, immigrants needed the work and were appreciative. Today sweatshops are often found in slow, developing countries, but many are found around the world. Majority of the workers are commonly women and children, who are usually uneducated. By classifying what a sweatshop is, it is a workplace that violates more than one federal and state labor law and their employees work for long
Large corporations such as Nike, Gap, and Reebok and many others from the United States have moved their factories to undeveloped nations; barely pay their employees enough to live on. Countries such as China, Indonesia, and Haiti have readily abundant cheap labor. There should be labor laws or an obligation of respecting workers to provide decent working conditions, fair wages, and safety standards.
A majority of the clothing worn and purchased today in the United States has been manufactured overseas in sweatshops. Since the beginning of factories and businesses, owners have always looked for a way to cut production costs while still managing to produce large quantities of their product. It was found that the best way to cut costs was to utilize cheap labor in factories known as sweatshops. According to the US General Account Office, sweatshops are defined as a “business that regularly violates both wage or child labor and safety or health laws”. These sweatshops exploit their workers in various ways: making them work long hours in dangerous working conditions for little to no pay. Personally, I believe that the come up and employment of these sweatshops is unethical, but through my research I plan to find out if these shops produce more positive than negatives by giving these people in need a job despite the rough conditions.
Sweatshops are large dim lit factories. Hours are incredibly long, normally from 6 am to 10 pm. The air is dusty and dirty, which makes it very hard to breath. Blisters and sores are not uncommon to be found on the hands of these workers. Most importantly, at the end of the day you will have only earned a whopping 27 cents. This is insane and should be considered a form of slavery. It should not be allowed for people to be treated this way and worked like this. Children are even put to work in these sweatshops. Children who are well under 16 and need to help support their families, so they are put to work at these young ages. Americans cannot possibly think that this is okay.
Sweatshops have been around for centuries, beginning around the late 1880’s. Sweatshops are classified by three main components, long work hours, very low pay and unsafe and unhealthy working environments. Sweatshops are usually found in manufacturing industries and the most highlighted production is clothing corporations, who take full advantage of the low production costs of their products. Many may think sweatshops are a thing of the past but they are still affecting many lives across the nations. There are many ways sweatshops affect lives, but a recent article titled “New study finds ‘more sweatshops than Starbucks’ in Chicago” explains that there are many low wage industry jobs that are violating labor laws in the United States alone. The article also reports how employees who are working in such conditions won’t speak up in fear of the retaliation employers will implement. Analyzing Sweatshops through the lens of the Sociological perspectives will help us better understand the illegal conditions of workplaces that still exist today.
Cambridge dictionary defines sweatshop as a small factory where workers are paid very little and work many hours under bad conditions. People working there are deprived of any kind of worker’s benefit. Child labor is very common in sweatshops. Workers in sweatshops are often missing key pieces of safety equipment such as face masks to ensure safe breathing or work in environments with insufficient means of emergency exit since employers may lock the doors and windows to prevent theft during working hours (Hartman ). The workers are abused, beaten, kicked, and shoved, even if they are sick or pregnant. Sweatshop is nothing but a modern form of slavery, because the workers are forced to work in harsh condition for a little wage, and they are denied any fundamental human rights .
They often use child labor, lack workers’ benefits, and use intimidation as means of controlling workers (Boal, Mark). Typically, sweatshops are found in developing countries, however, they are also a prevalent problem in many first world countries including the United States. Many manufacturers claim that sweatshops exist in order to keep prices down for consumers, while allowing profit. On the contrary, there is also substantial evidence that goes against these beliefs. For instance, a study showed that while doubling the wage of sweatshop workers would increase consumer price by 1.8%, consumers are willing to pay 15% more with the assurance that the product was made with fair labor (11 Facts About). This, however, is a hard argument seeing as the circumstance was hypothetical and if prices were actually raised, there is no way to assure that consumers would react the same way. Either way, both sides of the argument can agree that the conditions are not good, it is just a matter of analysing the cost vs. the benefit to determine their necessity. This leads to several questions: Are sweatshops a necessary evil, how could they be abolished, and what realistic goals regarding the bettering of worker conditions can be met? Through the answering of these questions, it is easy to see that despite claims of sweatshops bringing opportunities to
Sweatshops are a workplace where workers are subject to extreme exploitation, including the absence of a living wage, poor benefits, health and safety hazards, and random discipline (AMM 245, Kim). According to the department of labor, a sweatshop is a factory that violates two or more labor laws (http://www.dol.gov/). There is much controversy over the definition but sweatshops are manufacturers that don’t pay living wages, have low safety standards, don’t pay overtime, make employees work an abnormal amount of hours, have physical and mental abuse, among other issues. Sweatshops started in America during the industrialization period of the nineteenth period. People from Europe came to the United States in the attempt to create a better life for themselves and when they arrived most of them
In present China, forced and unpaid prison labor is widespread and common. Characteristics of Chinese sweatshops include overcrowding, lack of sanitary conditions, no worker breaks, demands to complete a task within a limited period of time, and a total lack of job security. Government negligence is what allows such abuses to persist. Some plants force employees into working extraordinary amounts of hours, for example, a Price Waterhouse audit of Nike factories in China found that some require seven days of work per week. Many workers who supposedly have the choice to work overtime must do so in order to survive on their low wage rates. The people working in Chinese sweatshops only get a small amount of payment for their work and nothing more. The locals do not benefit at all, but instead suffer from the presence of foreign businesses in their country. As for the foreigners, one telling statistic is that the United States imports an estimated $100 million per year in goods produced by Chinese migrant workers. The outside companies gain millions as the developing countries struggle to survive.
There are many views with the problem of utilizing sweatshops in developing economies. Many insist that utilizing sweatshops in developing economies composes exploitation. In certain circumstances, this may be true, but not all. It is an ongoing controversy of demolishing sweatshops and changing the laws of labor. Many anti-sweatshop activist supports the idea of demolishing sweatshops. Activist commonly focus on work conditions and low wages causing them to be ill – formed of the economy as a whole. Taking a deeper look into these developing countries, it is with out of doubt that these countries benefit from sweatshops. Sweatshops should not be demolished because the employees are benefited with income, their economy receives growth and
Prior to the collapse of the Rana Plaza conditions of the Bangladesh sweatshops can only be described as a prisons for helpless, innocent humans. Conditions that no human should be forced to work within, that wasn't the case though. Many workers say that to meet demand they were locked in their factories past working hours. Not only being overworked and having to use dangerous machinery without breaks but also being abused verbally, physically and emotionally by their corrupt managers. There's no ethical standard upheld by the employers of these workers all they cared about was the products produced.
By definition a sweatshop is a “negatively connoted term for any working environment considered to be unacceptably difficult or dangerous. Sweatshop workers often work long hours for very low pay in horrible conditions, regardless of laws mandating overtime pay and or minimum wage”. Many corporations in the United States use sweatshop labor in countries over seas such as China to produce their products at a lower cost. As entailed in the letter from a man born in China, many citizens on these countries resort to factory labor to support themselves to escape other sources on income such as prostitution. Without these corporations usage of oversea sweatshops these employees would be forced to return to self-demeaning jobs such as these.
In these sweatshops, workers are generally offered low wages with little nonwage benefits. In certain factories, workers have been denied of a “living wage” as their take-home pay have been insufficient to satisfy basic standards of living. Typically, in these countries, the minimum wage laws were violated and workers were weakly unionised to bargain for higher wages. For example, a typical Chinese worker earns a wage of Rmb$250-$350 while the minimum wage was supposed to be Rmb$350.
Almost everyone knows sweatshops are not acceptable places to work or support. Sweatshops, per definition from the International Labor Organization are organizations that violate more than two labor laws (Venkidaslam). There are several arguments against sweatshops. First, is that these organizations exploit their workers. They provide them low wages and some pay below the minimum wage of the home nation. Moreover, these workers are forced to work more than 60 hours per week and are mandated to work overtime. In addition, workers are subjected to unsafe environments and sexual abuse. Finally, sweatshops are known for their child labor, where children below the legal working age are paid extremely small wages. Anyone who is against sweatshops will say, choosing to partner with these organizations are unethical.
Most of the clothes that people wear every day in America were more likely made in sweatshops. Sweatshops are factories, and they exist in most countries, especially in third world countries. Sweatshops are usually crowded with many workers into small tenement rooms, poorly ventilated, and prone to fires and rat infestation. Products that commonly come from sweatshops are carpets, cotton, garments, cocoa, coffee, toys, and furniture. The danger of sweatshops are affecting many people around the world including men, women and young children. Sweatshops violates more than two of the labor laws, and they exploit many workers by offering them very low wages that could barely pay for food to survive, and they make