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I wish Nike would stay away from soccer. They have already commercialized every other sport in the world, so stay away from the "beautiful game." I am not gonna pick on Barca here, but only use them as an example. The workers in Vietnam who produce Nike products work all day long in horrible conditions for wages which are not enough to support one person. It is a shame to sports, and Barca should take some initiative (as should other clubs, like my beloved Arsenal)and drop Nike. I would like to see Barca back with Kappa or Jota and Arsenal with Umbro.
 

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EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHhOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO NIKE THE BEST!!!!!!
 

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Well, i wudnt like to see Barca with anyother make other than nike, especially Kappa, this doesnt mean i agree with whats happening in vietnam at all. However nike sells and brings in lots of money for the club.
 

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regulate said:
The workers in Vietnam who produce Nike products work all day long in horrible conditions for wages which are not enough to support one person.
The wages the Nike pays in Vietnam are much higher then what the workers would get from pretty much anyone else in Vietnam. If Barca drops Nike, and then Nike leaves Vietnam, the workers will be worse off.

I agree it can be terrible to be poor and living and working in Vietnam, but Nike and other companies like it are part of the solution not the problem.
 

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The Ties That Bind
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What the hell is this thread doing in here much less still open?

Say Nike and every company were to pay these sorts of workers the same wage such a job would demand in say the US and under the same working conditions. Do you know what would happen? The jobs would never leave the US and the Vietnamese labourers you're going on about (who aren't being forced to work these jobs mind you) would be doing something else if working at all.
 

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By taking the jobs Nike is offering, these people are working to the best of their alternatives--would it be helpful, even moral, to take away these jobs and decrease their array of choices?
 

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It's stupid to think that Nike is the only sportswear that uses workers from Vietnam to make their cloths and shoes. Am sure Adidas does the same and the rest of the 'big' companies that makes sportswear, it is just that Nike (because it's such a big company these days) is used to show a example of how stuff is made.

Also, this can be said about so many companies that bashing Nike is worthless.
 

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Boti Boti Boti
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Emirho said:
It's stupid to think that Nike is the only sportswear that uses workers from Vietnam to make their cloths and shoes. Am sure Adidas does the same and the rest of the 'big' companies that makes sportswear, it is just that Nike (because it's such a big company these days) is used to show a example of how stuff is made.

Also, this can be said about so many companies that bashing Nike is worthless.

My point exactly...
 

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I have a Nike replica Barça shirt but do feel a bit uncomfortable with it. This is a good subject for a thread but might not get the attention it deserves now because we've only got ONE THING on our minds. And like so many football subjects it's related to politics yet again. that politics rule gets in the way of all types of interesting discussion.
 

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Nike do nothing more than exploit the poverty people suffer in these countries where their merchandise is manufactured, they realise that they can 'afford' to offer these employees/slaves a pittance for working inhumane hours in inhumane conditions because these people have little other choice if they want to survive - it's sickening.

Nike aren't alone in this though, like every corporation in existence. Morality means very little when there are profits to be made.

As a supporter of club that were formed as a charitable institution with supposed socialist principles i'm disgusted that Celtic will be associated with Nike beginning from next season, but that's what football has become - money seems to be the only thing that matters these days.
 

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excellent point henrik. even if you were to defend nike's practices, they still dont mesh with the ideals and spirit of the club and its venerable history... sad.

still, as far as 'sweatshop' labour goes, i wonder if anything would improve if nike pulls out of the third world.

China is experiencing incredible growth across the board, across many industries. Not bad for a country, who years ago, only really had a textiles industry.
 

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King_Henrik said:
Nike do nothing more than exploit the poverty people suffer in these countries where their merchandise is manufactured, they realise that they can 'afford' to offer these employees/slaves a pittance for working inhumane hours in inhumane conditions because these people have little other choice if they want to survive - it's sickening.

Nike aren't alone in this though, like every corporation in existence. Morality means very little when there are profits to be made.

As a supporter of club that were formed as a charitable institution with supposed socialist principles i'm disgusted that Celtic will be associated with Nike beginning from next season, but that's what football has become - money seems to be the only thing that matters these days.
Good post.

What about Coca-cola..?
 

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King_Henrik said:
Nike do nothing more than exploit the poverty people suffer in these countries where their merchandise is manufactured, they realise that they can 'afford' to offer these employees/slaves a pittance for working inhumane hours in inhumane conditions because these people have little other choice if they want to survive
This is simply not true. Nike does not such thing.

Do they take advantange of the fact that wages are production costs are cheaper? Yes.

But Nike does not treat these workers inhumanly, they don't work more hours that the laws of the country allow them, the wages are in par with the rest of the country, they get health care and child care etc.

I have seen it first hand, I go to Tijuana every year, as a volunteer, and the Maquilladoras (Foreing companies manufacturing in the Free Trade Zone in Mexico) do more good than harm. There are unions even, they get health care, they get child care etc.

The so called sweatshops are no longer practiced by large corporations (I admit that most did, years ago)

These workers actually get more exploited by companies in their own country, again, I have seen it, at least in the Mexican border.

And I am not a right minded person.
 

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barça said:
This is simply not true. Nike does not such thing.

Do they take advantange of the fact that wages are production costs are cheaper? Yes.

But Nike does not treat these workers inhumanly, they don't work more hours that the laws of the country allow them, the wages are in par with the rest of the country, they get health care and child care etc.

I have seen it first hand, I go to Tijuana every year, as a volunteer, and the Maquilladoras (Foreing companies manufacturing in the Free Trade Zone in Mexico) do more good than harm. There are unions even, they get health care, they get child care etc.

The so called sweatshops are no longer practiced by large corporations (I admit that most did, years ago)

These workers actually get more exploited by companies in their own country, again, I have seen it, at least in the Mexican border.

And I am not a right minded person.
Just because you didn't experience any sweatshops when you visited one country doesn't mean that they've been completely eradicated across the board. You've used a very narrow band of your own experience to make a sweeping generalisation about a huge industry.

Check out this article about a workers' union dispute with NIKE from as recently as last month. They may have improved, but their exploitation policies in impoverished nations have by no means been completely eradicated.

United Students Against Sweatshops:

Tell Nike to meet Worker Demands NOW!!

February 7th, 2005

'On 29 October 2004, three executives of a recently formed union at MSP Sportswear in Thailand (one of NIKE's suppliers) were dismissed. Since then, the remaining nine executives in the plant have been subjected to constant harassment and have been prevented from carrying out their union activities. In the period since the dismissal there have been several meetings between the union executives, the local organization supporting them (CLIST), government officials and the main buyer, Nike. So far this has not resulted in any real progress. Tell Nike that we won't wait any longer-- they need to meet the workers' demands right now!!

Send a letter to the following decision maker(s):
Harsh Saini
Nike Director for Labor Practices, Dusty Kidd
W. Krittika

Below is the sample letter:

Subject: Take Action on MSP Sportswear NOW!

Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],

It has come to our attention that a Nike subcontractor, MSP Sportswear in Thailand has consistently violated associational rights over the course of the past six months. We are aware that three union leaders were fired on October 29, 2004 and have yet to be reinstated.

It is our understanding that Nike is waiting for the results of an investigation from the Welfare and Labour protection department in order to determine whether it will call for workers to be reinstated. We find this course of action to be unnecessary as it is obvious that the Nike code of conduct, as well as university codes of conduct, have been violated. We seek an end to the lengthy and bureaucratic court process which is ultimately stalling the reinstatement of union leaders. We seek that Nike respond to the demands of the union, those being:

1. Reinstatement of the three dismissed workers with back wages from the first day of dismissal until their reinstatement.

2. The company must reinstate the mother of one of the committee members of the trade union, who was also working at the factory and whom the union members believe got fired because of her family connection.

3. The company must stop all actions against the union and cease distributing misleading information about the union.

4. The company must allow the union to give leaflets and union membership application forms freely in the work place without intimidation or any form of interference to prevent workers from joining the union.

I urge you also to work with other buyers towards an effective and immediate remediation process, notwithstanding the legal process followed, and participate actively in organizing for all parties to discuss next steps.

We insist that Nike protect associational rights, meet with CLIST as was asked in a letter on December 15th, and reinstate the three dismissed union leaders. We reiterate that that this should be done promptly, avoiding more delays. It is obvious that MSP Sportswear has illegally dismissed workers due to union related activities. We understand that Nike representatives attended a meeting where an official from the Welfare and Labour Protection Department of the Ministry of Labour clearly stated that the dismissal of the workers was due to their union involvement. Due to the fact that members of the Ministry of Labour assert that the labour code has be violated it is clear that a protracted legal process is unnecessary and comes at the expense the dismissed employees.

We urge you to ensure that the demands of the workers are met and that they will be able to form and join a union of their choosing free from intimidation and harassment.

United Students Against Sweatshops eagerly anticipates a timely action to resolve the matter.

Sincerely,

(Your Name)


Visit the USAS site take further action on this issue

What's At Stake:

CLIST wrote a letter to Nike on 15 December asking for a meeting to take place before 20 December 2004 with all parties concerned to present their information regarding the violations of Nike's Code of Conduct, and once more submitted their demands.

Nike reported on 15 December 2004 that they were discussing with factory management how to follow-up the conciliator's recommendation that the workers would be rehired. In the subsequent email exchanges, the company indicated that the Austrian management strongly opposed this, and that Nike wanted to ultimately follow the governments ruling on the case. CLIST and CCC made it clear to Nike that, although the dismissed union members will file against their dismissal with the relevant authorities if the case is not resolved by the end of December, the legal framework as such has failed many times in the past to ensure that freedom of association is genuinely respected, and that though we expect Nike to work with the authorities, they can't and shouldn't wait for the authorities to solve the problem. Nike's code of conduct has been violated, so Nike has a responsibility to act directly itself.

On the 23d of December Nike informed CLIST that they'd requested the conciliator to identify appropriate next steps. The conciliator, after being contacted by CLIST, stated that there are two options, a higher amount of compensation can be discussed and negotiated, or, the workers can follow the standard legal procedure through the Labour relations committee.This has been a great disappointment to the union's executive and to CLIST: as outlined above, the confidence in the existing legal procedures is very low as it offers loopholes to avoid genuine freedom of association, and it is likely that this process will take a long time and not result in rehiring of the workers, but rather in paying them off with an amount probably lower then what was on offer earlier. If at the end of the day workers get referred back to the existing legal procedures then what is the use of having a Code of Conduct? If this means that Nike's Code of Conduct has no relevance if the legal procedure is followed, then why bother having a code at all?

Furthermore, A request was made in the December 15 letter to set up a meeting with all parties concerned where also the results of Nike's own investigation could be shared, to which no reaction has been given.The workers have filed against their dismissal on the 23d, but meanwhile strongly believe that Nike should share the results of their investigation and their conclusions, and implement its code without waiting for the outcome of the legal process. They have informed the FLA that they wish to file an official complaint with them as well.

Meanwhile Decathlon have done less, as they've only agreed to look into matters as part of its regular audit process, which was scheduled anyway for the end of December. No contact has been made by Decathlon with CLIST or with the union, despite repeated requests.'

The fact is, if it's going to be worthwhile to them to manufacture in the developing world they need to have no unions, or very weak unions. Their code of conduct was forced on them and they still can't stick to it.

http://www.corpwatch.org/article.php?id=11831
 

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King_Henrik said:
Just because you didn't experience any sweatshops when you visited one country doesn't mean that they've been completely eradicated across the board. You've used a very narrow band of your own experience to make a sweeping generalisation about a huge industry.
And what are you using? A letter from the "United Students Against Sweatshops"? Please, thats almost like a Carson 35 cut and paste, but worse.

King_Henrik said:
Check out this article about a workers' union dispute with NIKE from as recently as last month.
This is far from being an "article" and it says nothing othe rthan some union reps were fired, it doesn't even say what Nike or its subcontractor might have done:confused: I couldn't find anything for you to have concluded this: but their exploitation policies in impoverished nations have by no means been completely eradicated. Or did I read the "article" too fast?
 

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OK let me put my 2 cents in...
I am on the fence when it comes to issues like this. It is true that compared to the option of using labour in a country like the U.S., the option of opening in a poorer nation and paying much lower wages (thus decreasing cost and increasing profit) might seem like exploitation. In the past, I have looked down on companies like Nike for doing these things (expecially with all the negative press from a few years ago).
BUT after thinking about the subject for a while, I have come to realize that these issues are all relative. What might seem like exploitation to an ideals-inspired person living in a comfortable rich nation, where the minimum wage is ten-fold of that in a place like Thailand/Viet Nam etc... might not be construed as exploitation in the actual country where these goods are being produced and the plant is operating.
Is Nike forcing people to work at these plants? No.
If the people who are working at these plants have better options considering the state of their country's economy, are they not free to change jobs? Yes.
If Nike was forced to pay the same or comparable salaries to these workers as they would have to pay for hiring people in a richer country, what would happen? Like Blaugrana said, the advantages (from Nike's corporate point of view) of manufacturing in these nations would not exist anymore, and then those plants would definitely be shut down, leading to an even worse economical situation.
The fact remains that after considering the different sides to this issue, that people are working there willingly. The hours and conditions might be horrible, but this doesn't mean that "local" companies (for example ones manufacturing textiles) are any better (actually in most cases, they are worse when it comes to working conditions).
As the case King Henrik pasted above shows, there ARE unions that can deal with this sort of thing. The case in question itself really doesn't go into anything about working conditions, but since there are unions involved, it is their job to fight for better working conditions when needed (through strikes/lawsuits etc...) but in my opinion, it is extremely naive and idealistic to expect the corporations to behave in a way different than they have up until now. Conditions in such workplaces have been much worse in the past (especially with child labour), but due to the exposure in the media, have improved significantly over the past few years.
Also, singling Nike out, as opposed to ANY manufacturer out there (not Just Adidas etc.., but clothing designers or any industrial corp. that manufactures in poorer nations) doesn't make sense. This is a trend that goes beyond just one company.
The question that has to be answered is this: Is it better to have low-paying jobs in unideal conditions in these areas, or is it better to have no jobs at all? Of course we all want to see everyone working in poorer nations get paid more and prosper, but the reality of the situation is that if a corporation is going to have pay salaries equivalent to those in more developed nations, and add to that the cost of shipping the merchandise to North America/Europe where the merchandise is sold, it won't make business sense for them and those plants would be moved.
 
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