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Fresh Investigation Reveals Deterioration of Mattel's Labor Conditions

NEW YORK, Nov. 29, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- China Labor Watch (CLW) has released an investigative report on the labor conditions at one directly-owned Mattel factory and three Mattel supplier factories that together employ about 10,000 workers. Investigators, who entered the factories as production workers or carried out interviews, revealed a long list of illegal and unfair labor treatment at these four factories, including illegal overtime pay, excessive overtime, forced labor, myriad safety concerns, a lack of safety training, a lack of physical exams, inability to resign from work, blank labor contracts, unpaid work, a lack of social insurance, use of dispatch workers, a lack of a living wage, poor living conditions, unreasonable rules, and a lack of effective grievance channels.

Many of these violations have legal implications in China. For example, at a Mattel supplier called Winty Industries Corporation in Shenzhen, CLW's investigator learned that formal workers were only being paid 10 RMB ($1.6) and dispatch workers only 7.5 RMB ($1.19) per hour of weekday overtime despite local labor law which stipulates an hourly minimum overtime wage of 12.8 RMB ($2.05). This could have implications for millions of dollars in wage arrears.

Another example is overtime. All four factories maintained monthly overtime hours two to six times in excess of the 36-hour legal limit, with workers at Dongguan Dong Yao Toys consistently working between 180 and 210 hours of overtime per month during peak seasons, averaging out to over 13 hours of work per day every day of the month.

Safety is also a major concern. Toy production involves chemicals that are harmful to a person's health. But many workers at the factories in this investigation were not required to wear safety equipment, including those that spent ten or more hours every day spray painting toys.

CLW is cooperating with French labor group Peuples Solidaires and other European partners to launch an international Urgent Appeal to demand that Mattel immediately begin to rectify the illegal and unfair treatment that has been exposed in this report as well as take steps to strengthen the respect for labor rights in the long-term. These measures include changing Mattel's buying practice by increasing pay to factories and increasing time given for delivery, establishing independent worker hotlines, worker committees, roundtable discussions, and increasing production transparency .

Read the full report at: http://chinalaborwatch.org/pro/proshow-179.html

SOURCE China Labor Watch

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