Based on a recent report published by CNET News, investigators have concluded that Samsung’s Chinese manufacturer is not guilty of using child labor. The investigation was made after the South Korean company was criticized for hiring children under 16 years old to manufacture its devices.
Recent rumors have stated that Samsung’s manufacturer in China is using child labor for the production of its devices. The South Korean company wanted to personally verify the authenticity of the rumors and several representatives were sent in China to conduct field audits.
The research has proven that Samsung’s manufacturer has never hired employees that were younger than 16 years old. Several employees were, indeed, under 18, but they were older than 16, which means, they were legally able to work according to Chinese laws. The only problems the investigators discovered were that some employees had to work overtime “beyond local regulations”, others were fined for being late and the majority of them did not have access to medical clinics.
The results of the field audits were communicated through a press release. The South Korean company reassured everyone that they have a zero tolerance policy on child labor violations; therefore, they preferred to handle the investigation on their own.
China Labor Watch was the institution responsible for spreading the rumor that Samsung’s manufacturer is hiring children and treating them under the same conditions as adult workers. The article also wrote that children were paid less than adults in spite of the “harsh conditions” that they were facing in factories while assembling DVD players and mobile phones.
Based on the incriminating report, there were about 2,000 minor employees working for the HEG manufacturer. Their working day would last between 11 and 13 hours and the only break that was offered to them to eat was 40 minutes long.
Samsung will continue to investigate the working conditions of all its other manufacturers in September. For the moment, they decided to constrain HEG to improve its working conditions; otherwise, their contract will be terminated.