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In October 2001, Nike released its first-ever Corporate Responsibility Report. The fifty-six-page document shocked many labor experts because of the company’s openness about accepting some blame: CEO Phil Knight uncharacteristically admitted, “We made mistakes. . . . We deliberated when we should have acted and vice versa.” But fessing up to one’s sins is only a baby step in the right direction. Six months after the Nike report was released, Oxfam International, a worldwide partnership of agencies working to end poverty, found that workers making Nike products in Indonesia were earning full-time wages of only about $56 a month. Although the country’s legal minimum wage had increased that year, the cost of living had also risen, so workers may have been earning more than they had twelve months earlier but they were also spending more for necessities like food and fuel. In its report, Nike also attempted to debunk the idea that corpo- rations pocket huge profits at workers’ expense. Materials account for up to 70 percent of the cost of the average Nike shoe, it said. Plus, the company has to pay for shipping, duties, and insurance, as well as everyday business costs like taxes, design, research, administration, and so on. So the fact that a worker is paid a dollar to make a $100 shoe doesn’t necessarily mean that the company’s executives are rolling around naked on the other $99. At the same time, big companies aren’t exactly losing money for the sake of workers. According to a February 2001 article in Clariant magazine, gross margins (how much more a customer pays for a product than it costs the company to make it) for fashion brands are typically in excess of 60 percent. That’s quite impressive compared to the gross margins on computers (typically 20 to 25 percent), cell phones (30 to 40 percent), and fast food (20 to 30 percent). Over at Sara Lee, which manufactures Hanes and other activewear lines in a network of factories in five countries, each of the company’s suppliers must sign a contract agreement certifying that they’ve met the requirements of the company’s Global Business Practices, and staffers perform periodic random audits of each facility. “Should questionable behaviors come to light, our production contract agreement would be voided and our production would be moved to another facility,” says Duane Hammer, vice president of planning and inventory control at the company. It may be a good policy on paper, but as labor activists have argued, when manufacturers continually pick up and leave, it never really fixes the problem. Relocating may punish the factory’s owners, but it also penalizes the workers by leaving them unemployed, until, that is, the next manufacturer who may pay them even less comes along.Fashion leggings plus size – Style Jeans Allnewhairstyles

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