Sweatshops: Progress or Peril?
Examining the controversial phenomenon of sweatshops and their disastrous social ramifications.
This paper discusses pros and cons of sweatshops. It looks at the benefits to third world economies, evolution of human rights in industrial nations and conditions in sweatshops. It focuses on the Nike Shoe Company situation and how this company may be using sweatshop labor.
“The word sweatshop immediately jumps off the page any time you read it with a scathingly negative connotation. The word conjures up imagery of smog-belching industrial behemoths, with whip-cracking slave-drivers giving better treatment to the coal in the furnace than the worker on the assembly line. As with most stereotypes, sweatshops are partially a matter of fact. By the public’s generally accepted definition, a sweatshop is a workplace where workers are subject to extreme exploitation, including the absence of a living wage or benefits, poor working conditions, and arbitrary discipline, such as verbal and physical abuse. (Sweatshop Watch). This stigma has led to a huge campaign, especially in economically prosperous countries, over the existence of these sweatshops. The terrible irony in this situation: Those who stand to get hurt the most by anti-sweatshop efforts are the very people the efforts are meant to help.”