|End-of-day quote - 10/28|
Top Glove Bhd : Demand for disposable gloves amid pandemic spotlights rubber sector abuses
|10/13/2020 | 04:18am|
Confiscations of passports, weeks without days off and more than 84 hours of work, restrictions on movement and unfair wage cuts are some of the exploitative practices reported in
"There is no real good practice in the industry. This is not just about
Many of the workers in the sector are from foreign countries, mainly
To meet these payments, which vary according to nationality - around
"Most of this money is actually a kickback. It's actually the money that is demanded by the company and the human resources department - they demand money from the agent. for every worker that they get," Hall said.
However, the payments continued among much of the foreign workforce and, according to Hall, more than 12,000 migrant workers of the company have been affected by the practice since the beginning of last year.
After initially denying the allegations, the company has agreed to return the fees paid to agents and intermediaries, which will result in a payout of
The move was welcomed by the US authorities, whose market accounts for about 27 percent of the company's total exports.
"We have duly submitted the independent consultant's report to the US CBP and already commenced remediation to our migrant workers with respect to recruitment fees previously paid by the migrant workers to agents or other parties,"
"We are following up closely with the US CBP and are hopeful of an expeditious resolution of the matter and revocation of the WRO (withhold release order)."
"The issue at hand is not limited to the rubber glove industry but is a prevalent problem in the country," Yap said, adding that the remediation payments will be made until
The delay in the reimbursement to migrant workers has also been criticized by activists, who say it is unfair as foreign workers had to face the costs of recruitment fees and related costs all in one go.
"They are worried that the workers will leave if they have been paid (.) and they won't have any workers left, which is obviously forced labor in itself," Hall said.
When asked by EFE about other allegations of abuse, such as excessive working hours, passport confiscations and limits on freedom of movement,
Other Malaysian manufacturers of rubber gloves accused of poor labor practices, such as Kossan and
The profits of these companies have multiplied even as complaints of abusive practices against some of them continue.
"When [the CBP] take action, things move. They're not going to lift the sanctions any time soon because
© 2020 EFE News Services (U.S.) Inc., source