Essay Nike and Unfair Labor Practices

1055 Words Jul 23rd, 2013 5 Pages
Nike and Unfair Labor Practices I. Introduction
Nike has been accused of the unfair labor practice of sweatshop labor. A sweatshop is a place with hazardous working environments, extreme temperatures and abusive employers, hence the term sweat shop. Sweatshop workers work long days exceeding 14 hours and earn less than the living wage (Britanica, n.d.). While these conditions may be shocking to Americans and Modern Western Nations the notion of abusive working conditions is more attractive to Asians and South Americans who are faced with the stark choice of terrible working conditions or unemployment and possible death by starvation. The accusation then is that Nike is using these labor condition inequalities to take unethical
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Their defense was that they were not directly involved in manufacturing and their subcontractors were the ones causing sweatshop conditions. But they eventually owned up to their responsibility and began to pressure their subcontractors to provide better working conditions for their employees.
Of course we must remember that this is not illegal in the context of the countries where it is happening. Low minimum wage and poor working conditions are unacceptable in the U.S. in the norm in some countries if for no other reason than because there are no other better alternatives. Those people working for $1.75 a day probably counted themselves lucky that they had at least that to buy food. These practices are legal in those countries, the only question left then is if the practices are moral in the light of God’s word. III. Immoral practice amounting to slavery.
“Should you be jealous because I am kind to others?” (Matthew 20:15) At first blush the parable of the vineyard workers seems to suggest that God himself allows unfair labor practices. In that parable the men who started working late in the afternoon were given the same reward as those who worked all day. “Those people worked only one hour, and yet you’ve paid them just as much as you paid us who worked all day in the scorching heat” (Matthew 20:12 NLT) but you see in his response he said “He answered one of them, ‘Friend, I haven’t been

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