The dark side of cyberspace

'Inside the sweatshops of China's computer hardware production' - a speaker tour organised by Procure IT Fair. Jenny Chan and Charles Ho of the Chinese NGO SACOM will visit Berlin, Brno, Prague, Munich, Dresden and Warsaw.

The dark side of cyberspace

On the invitation of ProcureITfair, Jenny Chan and Charles Ho of the Chinese organisation Students and Scholars against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) will make a tour along a number of European cities to report about labour rights violations inside Chinese sweatshops producing computer hardware. In their presentations they will also dig into the consequences of the financial-economic crisis for the manufacturing industry in China. The presentations will be followed by discussions with the audience present.

Chinese high tech sweatshops employ mainly female migrant workers who spent long working days manually assembling computer components.  Insufficient wages, inadequate health protection, occupational diseases and total control by the management of these sweatshops over their workers are prevalent. At peak production times, workers may work until 80 hours per week.  Yet, this is not only a story of wretched abuse. The story of these Chinese migrant workers is also one of opposition by determined workers and social activists.

Chan and Ho of SACOM will report on the current struggles taking place in China´s production zones producing for the world market. They will present a new study on the working conditions at factories producing computer components, written on the basis of interviews with workers.

Chan and Ho describe the impacts of the current global financial-economic crisis which is triggering widespread lay-offs throughout China. Chan and Ho call for international solidarity to counter the harmful consequences of the globalisation of production networks. Not only in China, but worldwide – workers everywhere are facing growing pressure and risk to become the victims of a race to the bottom negatively affecting wages and working conditions.

ProcureITfair is a coalition of NGOs from various European countries that intend to raise awareness on the working conditions and environmental pollution in the production of computers and asks politicians and public purchasers to use their (buying) powers to demand compliance with international labour rights and ecological standards in the global supply chain of computers. The German NGO WEED is organising this speaker tour. WEED will facilitate discussion between the speakers and the audience on international solidarity action, as well as on the possibilities of social public procurement.

 

Details of the speaker tour programme:

Germany, Berlin

15 December  

14-16pm               TU Berlin Hauptgebäude / Straße des 17. Juni 135 / Raum H0106

19-21pm               IG Metall Haus / Alte Jakobstraße 149 / Raum E01 - E02

 

Czech Republic, Brno

16 December

12am                Fakulta Sociálních Studií MU / Joštova 10 / room 43

 

Czech Republic, Prague

16 December

19.30pm           Stará Budova VŠE / nám.W. Churchilla 4 / room SB240

 

Germany, Munich

17 December

19pm                     EineWeltHaus / Schwanthalerstraße 80 RGB

 

Germany, Dresden

18 December 

19pm                     Veränderbar / Görlitzerstr. 42 / Hinterhof 

 

Poland, Warsaw 

19 December

18pm                Kepa Cafe / Finlandzka 12A

 

 

 

This event has been organised with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this event are the sole responsibility of ProcureITfair and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

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The speaker tour is co-funded by the Katholischer Fonds, Stiftung Umverteilen, IG Metall, Aktion Mensch.

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