| Labor | | N & P Home |
Dear Reader,The below represents an early attempt to treat the problem of worker exploitation by companies operating in various foreign countries and export processing zones (EPZ's) throughout the world.
FOR INTRODUCTION INTO THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
TITLE: The Worldwide Minimum Wage Act of 2012
AUTHOR: Mr. Alex Lafayette
STATUS: Not yet introduced
To mandate that developing nations and other nations enforce a minimum wage for their workers, which shall be based on the amount needed for a worker to provide for a family, and minimum working and dormitory safety and comfort conditions, through the imposition of U.S. import tariffs equaling no less that three times the average 2011 import tariff rate for companies that do not respect an international minimum wage.
WHEREAS, so many families cannot afford basic foodstuffs on wages earned working for companies in foreign countries;
WHEREAS, a plethora of these companies routinely exploit their workers, not paying them more than a small fraction of their actual value to the company, while said companies enjoy high profits from this fact;
WHEREAS, Using these wages earned, workers in poor developing countries and other countries will not make enough to afford a higher education in their own country;
WHEREAS, working conditions in factories in Export Processing Zones and in other factories in impoverished nations have proven to be unsafe and uncomfortable for workers in so-called “sweatshops”, in addition to there existing such criminal policies as forced abortions for pregnant women per order of factory management teams;
WHEREAS, sporting goods, for example, that may command a retail price of between $50 to $100 USD are assembled by workers making as low as 8 cent per hour, and being made to work up to 16 hours a day;
WHEREAS, companies charge workers part of the workers’ wages for workers to stay in factory-owned dormitories, the sleeping quarters of which are often overcrowded, having up to 8 persons sleeping in one small dormitory room;
WHEREAS, the above clauses constitute human rights abuses under any sound metric of human rights doctrine;
BE IT RESOLVED that no company operating in any country or countries in the world shall pay less that three times the average 2011 United States import tariff rate on any imported goods, if that company operates does not respect a minimum wage for workers being some multiple greater than 2.0 of the cost of monthly food and housing for its workers, and/or does not enforce humane working conditions for its workers.