Amazon.com, Inc. — owned by billionaire Jeff Bezos — is selling items manufactured in foreign factories with dangerous working conditions and where workers are treated as slave labor, a new report alleges.
An expansive report by the Wall Street Journal traced the supply chains of a number of Amazon products to find that the multinational tech corporation is selling items that are made in “blacklisted” factories with unsafe environments and unethical worker standards.
The Journal reports:
According to a Wall Street Journal investigation, the site today offers a steady stream of clothing from dozens of Bangladeshi factories that most leading retailers have said are too dangerous to allow into their supply chains. [Emphasis added]
A yellow gingham toddler top embroidered with flowers was among those clothes, listed on Amazon for $4.99 by a New York City retailer. The Journal traced the top to a factory in Chittagong, Bangladesh, that has no fire alarms and where doors are of a type managers can lock and keep workers in. A laborer at the factory, 18-year-old Nasreen Begum, said she spends 12-hour days there stitching shirts with 300 others. “You’re trapped inside until the time you complete the orders,” she said. [Emphasis added]
The Bangladesh factory, known as Riverside Apparels, that produced the yellow toddler top not only has awful working conditions, but the workers are subjected to substandard treatment.
“In a noncompliant factory you don’t get paid on time, you don’t get a bonus like other factory workers and you don’t get medical leave,” one of the factory’s supervisors told the Journal.
Tons of factories in Bangladesh have been blacklisted by some retailers as too dangerous and unethical to workers after the 2013 collapse of a Dhaka, Bangladesh factory that killed more than 1,000 garment workers — mostly women.
Still, the Journal discovered that of the 122 blacklisted factories in Bangladesh, 67 sell their items to wholesalers who then sell the products on Amazon, and 33 of those factories have items listed on Walmart’s website.
Amazon was found to sell a variety of clothing, from pants to fishnet body stockings, that came from Bangladesh factories that have been blacklisted for their working conditions and treatment of workers. Amazon does not inspect any factories used by wholesalers or third-party sellers.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.