Globalisation and Corporate Crime

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  • Globalisation and Corporate Crime
    • Case Studies
      • Primark (2009): Factory workers making clothes for  Primark work up to 12 hours a day for £3.50 an hour. The majority of factory workers in their UK bases are asylum seekers and illegal immigrants with no alternative option.
      • An investigation into working conditions at a factory in Suqian, China, that makes components for Apple products has found "serious health and safety, environmental, and human rights violations. Workers live in big dormitories, and many have attempted suicide due to their inability to escape the company,. The only solution undertaken by Apple in response to this was to fit anti-suicide netting around the buildings.
    • What is it?
      • Transactional Corporations (TNCs) can now switch manufacturing to low wage countries to gain higher profits. This therefore results in the exploitation of third world workers, working long hours for little pay.
        • The lack of a fair and stable government in poorer countries means that there are often high levels of deregulation. TNCs can sometimes bribe governments in order to allow free trade within a given country
        • Globalisation is the process by which the world is becoming increasingly interconnected as a result of massively increased trade and cultural exchange.
    • Theoretical Approaches
      • Marxism- Due to the rapid increase in globalisation, bourgeoisie ran TNCs have a wider market to fulfill as well as access to easily exploitable workers. These workers form the proletariat and work through necessity, therefore can't escape capitalist exploitation
      • Feminism- TNC's are predominantly ran by men.  Gender inequality in third world countries results in girls being denied a formal education. This means that the only work they can undertake is the type offered by TNC's. 85-90% of sweatshop labourers are female. Patriarchy is therefore to blame for the exploitation of third world workers.
      • Functionalism- In order for society to function harmoniously, it must have a stable workforce. Any harmful exploitative conduct can act as a warning device that signifies a need for more regulation and worker's rights, therefore corporate crime has positive functions and is healthy for society.
    • Facts and Statistics
      • In developing countries, an estimated 168 million children ages 5 to 14 are forced to work.
      • A study showed that doubling the salary of sweatshop workers would only increase the consumer cost of an item by 1.8%, while consumers would be willing to pay 15% more to know a product did not come from a sweatshop.
      • Because women make up 85 to 90% of sweatshop workers, some employers force them to take birth control and routine pregnancy tests to avoid supporting maternity leave or providing appropriate health benefits.


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