Modal close

Dear Democracy Now! visitor,

You turn to Democracy Now! for ad-free news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power. Democracy Now! brings you crucial reporting like our coverage from the front lines of the Dakota Access pipeline protests or news about this unprecedented US presidential election—and our coverage is never paid for by the oil and gas companies or the campaigns and superPACs. We produce our daily news hour at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation—all without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How? This model of news depends on your support. Today, less than 1% of our visitors support Democracy Now! with a donation each year. If even 3% of our website visitors donated just $8 per month, we could cover our basic operating expenses for a year. Pretty amazing right? If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Topics

National Labor Committee Exposes a Suppressed Salvadoran Government Report Detailing Workingconditions in Factories Making Clothes for Nike, Walmart, the Gap and Others; Anti-Sweatshop Movementtargets

May 14, 2001
Story
WATCH FULL SHOW

Last week the National Labor Committee released the results of an investigation into 11 maquila factories in ElSalvador which revealed that garment workers are earning 29 cents an hour sewing player jerseys for the NationalBasketball Association (NBA) that retail for $140.

The NLC study is aimed at putting pressure on the NBA and its players and represents a new tactic for the U.S.anti-sweatshop movement, which has previously focused its attention on large manufacturers, retailers anduniversities in an effort to secure higher wages and better working conditions for garment factory workers.

The National Labor Committee also uncovered an investigation jointly funded and conducted by USAID and the SalvadoranMinistry of Labor into working conditions at more than 200 maquila factories in El Salvador’s free trade zones. Theinvestigation uncovered below-subsistence wages, forced overtime, abusive and unsafe working conditions, limitedaccess to health care and the complete denial of worker freedom of association. The Salvadoran Ministry of Labor,which had apparently expected a less than truthful investigation, moved quickly to suppress the report, fire theresearchers who wrote it, and denounce its findings.

The USAID/Ministry of Labor report on conditions in El Salvador’s free trade zones raises many of the issues at theheart of President Bush’s proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas, which the National Labor Committee charges wouldextend to the entire hemisphere the low wages and appalling labor standards they have uncovered.

Guest:

  • Charles Kernaghan, Executive Director of the National Labor Committee.

Related link:


The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.