|Issue No 110||07 September 2001|
Bra Wars: US Giant Quit Burma
By Alison Peters
In a week when the ILO investigators head into Burma to review the military regime's use of forced labour the American based multi national Sara Lee has announced that it will cease production of its garments in Burma.
Sara Lee, who own the brand Hanes and are a top seller of underwear in the United States, took the action after the Free Burma Coalition (FBC) publicised on their web site that Hanes products had been found in shops bearing the "Made in Myanmar" tag.
In a letter to FBC Sara Lee Vice President and Chief Counsel Melvin L. Ortner wrote " We want the Free Burma Coalition to know that production in Burma violates both our Global Operating Principles and our Supplier Selection Guidelines...two of our licensees did use Burma facilities in direct violation of their contract with us...We have taken immediate steps with both licensees to confirm that neither will make our product in Burma again".
Labor Council Secretary John Robertson has welcomed the move by Sara Lee and has called on other organizations, including Triumph International, to follow their lead and stop trade with Burma until such time as the military regime in that country ceases its practice of using forced labour.
"Australian Unions will continue working with community, church and student groups to highlight those companies who continue to operate in Burma in contravention of the ILO decision" he said. "Decisions like this one made by Sara Lee give ordinary people a choice of buying products from companies who do the right thing and those that put profits above human rights".
This is a critical time for supporters of democracy in Burma with a team of high level experts due to visit Burma to gather evidence for the ILO on what has occurred since the decision taken last year. The delegation is headed up by Sir Ninian Stephens from Australia and will report their findings on the use of forced labour to the ILO later this year.
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Human Rights: Long Road to Nowhere
Iraqi refugees travel the same tortuous road as Afghans. The refugees on the Tampa have almost certainly endured a similar ordeal.
Immigration: Experience Required
Veronica Apap looks at the many difficulties migrants face in having their skills recognised in Australia.
International: Why Economic Rationalism Isn't
The CFMEUs Phil Davey surveys the wreckage after 10 years of Brazil's Government doing what the free marketeers want.
History: Johnny's Naruan Wet Dream
Rowan Cahill looks at how Australia's preferred refugee dumping ground's history is indelibly linked with our own.
Unions: Getting the Message Out
Caroline Alcorso argues the integration of immigrant workers into the trade union movement has been a central issue in Australia’s post-war labor history.
Work/Time/Life: Driven To The Edge
In the ACTU’S groundbreaking Fifty Families report there is one particularly sobering story. Frank tells how the modern workplace is driving some people to the fatal edge.
Review: Whose Party?
NSW Labor’s century of successes began in 1910, as did the “middle classing” of Labor policy.
Satire: Ethnic Wog Gangs Rape Everyone
People who are white in colour are being raped by people who are not white, an exclusive Chaser investigation found last week.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005