Monday, February 09, 2009

The dehumanization of young workers producing our computer keyboards

The National Labor Committee has put together a report about the Meitai Plastics & Electronics factory in Guangdong, China that highlights the ill-treatment of the mainly young women workers there. The factory makes keyboards and printer cases for Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Lenovo, Microsoft and IBM. From NLC:
If a worker steps on the grass on the way to the dorm, she is fined. The workers are locked in the factory compound four days a week and are prohibited from even taking a walk.

Management tries to brainwash the young workers, telling them they “…must love the company like their home...” and that “to serve society, each worker must be devoted to their duty…continuously striving for perfection…” and “developing good personal work habits.” These good workers also have to spy on each other for “…employees should actively monitor each other.” Communism in China has come a long way as the young workers at the Meitai factory are taught that, “economizing on capital…is the most basic requirement of factory enterprise.”

Workers who hand out flyers or discuss factory conditions with outsiders will be fired. Many young workers have never heard the word union and have no idea what it is.

All the workers know is that they all—“feel like we are serving prison sentences.”

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