GAP children's sweatshop in New Delhi, India

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  1. This makes me SICK.

    Age 10-13 year old kids working as "virtual slaves" hand-stitching clothing for GAPKIDS clothing line, and the clothing was to be shipped to the US. A hidden camera from an investigative journalist shows the children working without pay for up to 16 hours a day, in New Delhi, India, in filthy conditions, and it clearly shows the GAP label on the garments these poor children are sewing. The kids had all been imported from an impoverished state in northern India.

    The Observer quoted one boy identified only as Jivaj as saying that child employees who cried or did not work hard enough were hit with a rubber pipe or had oily cloths stuffed into their mouths. The paper said the sweatshop, or "derelict industrial unit," that it found during its investigation in New Delhi was "smeared in filth, the corridors lined with excrement from a flooded toilet."
  2. Vast majority of India treats the CASTS that way. They are viewed as slime and trash. I wonder if these were CAST children. BTW this doesn't excuse the GAP company but India is questionable in general.:cursing:
  3. Um excuse me but where did you get this information from? And what is a CAST? If you are referring to the caste system which virtually does not exist except for poor village communities and uneducated families, then your data is still incredibly old. :push:
  4. There is something called "willfull blindness" that is prosecuted as a crime. This has been the complaint against Costco and Walmart when they at one point were deliberately turning a blind eye to where their goods were coming from (in this case, fake handbags).

    I strongly believe corporations like the GAP either know child labor is being used and simply hope they aren't caught, or are "willfully blind" and refusing to do their research and keep and eye on how their manufacturers make their goods. They are ultimately responsible and I hope GAP will consider donating money for the housing and schooling of these children that seem largely abandoned by impoverished families.
  5. Are you of Indian descent?

    There are many, many articles and research journals that indicate the caste system is well and alive in India, whether or not it is officially recognized by the government. Just today in the New York Times, there was an article about a Hindu woman marrying a Muslim man, resulting in his murder.

  6. Please make sure that your information is culturally sensitive and accurate. Thank you
  7. Yes I am, and I am aware that there are many articles about the caste system, most providing information that is not entirely true! I even read a few papers in my text books at college about how Hindu's worship cows and can not marry anyone outside of their castes. I don't know anyone that doesn't eat beef and no one I know follows the caste system. It is a very OLD system. A Hindu marrying a Muslim is about religion not caste, and of course there are always people who are insane about their religion. Again this is not the majority (my DH is a white Englishman, and I just attended an Indian friend's wedding yesterday and she married a Jose Havier....).

    The majority of Americans are not the KKK or Mormons with 10 wives and 17 kids. If most of the news provided to the rest of the world was about that then that is what people would think the whole country is about. I find books providing false info about many countries in schools, colleges, and museums and it makes me wonder what is going on. I can understand it being on tv since tv is about entertainment but in school? :sad:
  8. Great points.
  9. ^ :smile: It is really about perspective. Sort of like when people discuss such and such person in X country makes less than a dollar a month...well a whole dollar in their country might be enough to provide them with at least one meal a day for a month. I don't blame most people for not knowing the details or how to put the information into perspective, since how else are people supposed to get their info from if it is not from college text books, professors, and research journals etc. I just find it annoying when people base their opinions on a country or its people based on a small amount of info they barely have.

    As for the original post in this thread, yes there is child labor in India. Some of it is not sick abuse, some of it is like the kids helping their parents out. (Children in this the US and pretty much every country at one time or another worked when they were young before education became a big deal. It's not always abuse) They are loved by their family and those they work for. Children and family are an important part of the Indian culture. But there is also child abuse which is clearly what was happening in this place in New Delhi. I am glad people have found out about it and I am sure some action will be taken.
  10. Excellent points. I remember in high school they made the BIGGEST deal about the caste system and presented it as the current law of the land in India. I also remember being taught that Hindus worshipped cows. It wasn't until I was in college and took classes on South Asia that I realized how erroneous this information was.

    As for the child sweatshops - way to go GAP :push: A majority of corporations like to turn a blind eye to the conditions of these factories and pretend it's not happening. As long as they get their products made for a cheap price they could care less what happens to the workers.
  11. ^Thank you! Actually even if it isn't about child labor or turning a blind eye to poor conditions, I feel uncomfortable when I see a "made in X" tag (poor country) and I know that it cost the company pennies to produce but they charge American and European customers hundreds of dollars. I wish they could give some of that money to help the laborers out or give them some perks. They get a job yes but not much income..
  12. As upsetting and disgusting child labor is, it is a fact that this is practiced in some developing countries. Based on the statistics by ILO, the number of child labour on those countries can top to 250 million, with 120 million of them working on a full time basis. Asian countries (excl. Japan) seem to be the worst source of child labor according to the statistics.

    Unfortunately, that place in New Delhi is only one of many. And I am grateful that it has been spotted. It needs to be taken seriously imo. The article said, these kids were sold by their families to the sweatshop and all is because of poverty.
    I hope GAP is really taking this seriously, not only pretending or only saying in the media.

  13. This story is just the tip of the iceberg. I think we've all become way too accustomed to abundant supplies of inexpensive and stylish clothing, without really thinking about where it comes from or how it is manufactured.
  14. I know what you mean.. I am like you too. There was some fiasco over here last year that involved a factory that was producing shoes for Nike. I almost fainted when I saw how much it cost for the factory to make a pair of shoes, and how much Nike ended up selling in their stores. This is a legitimate factory and already I thought "wow, how overpriced". That's why I'm so upset if I see those big corps getting too greedy by using child labor and such.
  15. Yes Caste (untouchables) may be deemed illigal but old traditions die hard especially in the rural areas. I too know many people from India per my job. They share that prejudices run very strong to this day.

    A culture that has a long history treating children (and adults) in this condition should not surprise you that the practice is viewed favorable even now. Also parents could forfeit their kids to sweat shops in order to eat. Prostition is wide spread with young girls for the same reason in India. Now I'm not justifying this action against children and I pray GAP reacts venemently to this practice. Like maybe move to another country or have company officials peruse the working conditions to prevent this kind of horror.

    More below.