Michael Kors’ China Factory Workers Strike Over Alleged Abuse

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HONG KONG — Workers at a Chinese factory that supplies to designer brands including Michael Kors, Coach and Marc Jacobs, among others, have gone on strike to protest alleged sub-standard and illegal working conditions, according to NGO China Labor Watch. Guangzhou Panyu Shimen Handbag Ltd. Co, a South Korean-owned factory, has been accused of failing to pay its workers a salary in line with local laws – its workers have gone on strike over back pay owed and are campaigning to receive a monthly base salary of 3,500 renminbi ($553 at current exchange) during production-low seasons. Among the reported violations: not providing pensions, housing funds, hazard pay for workers in high-temperature environments, sick pay, or compensated paternity leave. The workers also claim that the company has not abided by state-mandated occupational health exams.  “We have not even received the benefits that are stipulated in Chinese law,” an open letter to the factory management said, noting that some of its labor force had been at the factory for 10 or even 20 years. “We are now requesting for the company to change their previous illegal activities and compensate us for our past owed benefits.” In addition to being a large supplier for Michael Kors, the accessories-focused factory

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