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Samsung Accused of Using Child Labor



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    SAN JOSE, CA - JULY 30: A sign is posted in front of a Samsung Electronics office on July 30, 2012 in San Jose, California. The trial in the Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. patent battle begins today at a San Jose federal courthouse to determine if Samsung illegally copied technolgy used in Apple's popular iPhone and iPads. Apple is seeking $2.5 billion in damages. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

    Although Samsung released an annual report saying that its Chinese suppliers didn't use child labor, human rights watchdog China Labor Watch reported that there are several instances of the suppliers using underage workers.

    China Labor Watch alleges that there was child labor at the Shinyang Electronics factory in Dongguan and insults Samsung's reports as ads "that don't have any real value for the workers," according to the Verge. From the China Labor Watch statement:

    During the busy season and in urgent need of labor, Shinyang hires child labor and underage student workers. These minors will usually only work for a period of three to six months, toiling for 11 hours every day without overtime pay, and the factory does not purchase social insurance for them as required by law. These young workers usually leave when the factory as it enters the off-season, and the factory does not need to provide any sort of severance pay.

    The labor group found that children weren't being paid for all hourly work and worked without labor contracts. Samsung has said it will investigate the claims and "take appropriate action." 

    Another report from the Guangzhou Daily indicated that more child workers were found at another factory in Dongguan, showing that the practice is widespread in the region. However, just because it's common doesn't excuse using and often exploiting child labor. It means that Samsung, Apple, and other tech companies doing business in China need to be more vigilant about what goes on in their suppliers' factories.