Nike has contracted with more than 700 shops around the world and has offices located in 45 countries outside the United States. Most of the factories are located in Asia, including Indonesia, China, Taiwan, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Pakistan, Philippines, and Malaysia. Nike is hesitant to disclose information about the contract companies it works with. However, due to harsh criticism from some organizations like CorpWatch, Nike has disclosed information about its contract factories in its Corporate Governance Report. Human rights concerns
Nike has been criticized for contracting with factories (known as Nike sweatshops) in countries such as China, Vietnam, Indonesia and Mexico. Vietnam Labor Watch, an activist group, has documented that factories contracted by Nike have violated minimum wage and overtime laws in Vietnam as late as 1996, although Nike claims that this practice has been stopped. The company has been subject to much critical coverage of the often poor working conditions and exploitation of cheap overseas labor employed in the free trade zones where their goods are typically manufactured. Sources for this criticism include Naomi Klein's book No Logo and Michael Moore documentaries. During the 1990s, Nike faced criticism for the use of child labor in Cambodia and Pakistan in factories it contracted to manufacture soccer balls. Although Nike took action to curb or at least reduce the practice, they continue to contract their production to companies that operate in areas where inadequate regulation and monitoring make it hard to ensure that child labor is not being used. In 2001, a BBC documentary uncovered occurrences of child labor and poor working conditions in a Cambodian factory used by Nike. The documentary focused on six girls, who all worked seven days a week, often 16 hours a day. Campaigns have been taken up by many colleges and universities, especially anti-globalisation groups, as well as several anti-sweatshop groups such as the United Students Against Sweatshops. As of July 2011, Nike stated that two-thirds of its factories producing Converse products still do not meet the company's standards for worker treatment. A July 2011 Associated Press article stated that employees at the company's plants in Indonesia reported constant abuse from supervisors. Environmental record
According to the New England-based environmental organization Clean Air-Cool Planet, Nike ranks among the top three companies (out of 56) in a survey of climate-friendly companies. Nike has also been praised for its Nike Grind program (which closes the product lifecycle) by groups like Climate Counts. One campaign that Nike began for Earth Day 2008 was a commercial that featured basketball star Steve Nash wearing Nike's Trash Talk Shoe, which had been constructed in February 2008 from pieces of leather and synthetic leather waste from factory floors. The Trash Talk Shoe also featured a sole composed of ground-up rubber from a shoe recycling program. Nike claims this is the first performance basketball shoe that has been created from manufacturing waste, but it only produced 5,000 pairs for sale. Another project Nike has begun is called Nike's Reuse-A-Shoe program. This program, started in 1993, is Nike's longest-running program that benefits both the environment and the community by collecting old athletic shoes of any type in order to process and recycle them. The material that is produced is then used to help create sports surfaces such as basketball courts, running tracks, and playgrounds. A project through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill found workers were exposed to toxic isocyanates and other chemicals in footwear factories in Thailand. In addition to inhalation, dermal exposure was the biggest problem found. This could result in allergic reactions including asthmatic reactions Nike: Abuse in Indonesia...
References: DesJardins, Joseph. (2009). An Introduction to Business Ethics (Ed: 4). New York, NY: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
NIKE, Inc. - The official corporate website for Nike and its affiliate brands.." NIKE, Inc. - The official corporate website for Nike and its affiliate brands.. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Apr. 2013. .
Nike workers kicked, slapped and verbally abused at factories making Converse line in Indonesia | Mail Online." Home | Mail Online. N.p., 13 July 2011. Web. 21 Apr. 2013. .
5. 1992-1993: Protests at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, CBS’ 1993 interview of Nike factory workers, and Ballinger’s NGO “Press For Change” provokes a wave of mainstream media attention.
7. 1996: Nike establishes a department tasked with working to improve the lives of factory laborers.
12. 1998: Nike faces weak demand and unrelenting criticism. It has to lay off workers, and begins to realise it needs to change.
16. 2002-2004: The company performs some 600 factory audits between 2002 and 2004, including repeat visits to problematic factories.
18. 2005: Nike becomes the first in its industry to publish a complete list of the factories it contracts with.
19. 2005: Nike publishes a detailed 108-page report revealing conditions and pay in its factories and acknowledging widespread issues, particularly in its south Asian factories.
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