‘Who pays the price’ screened at High Tech Campus Eindhoven

On Friday March 21, filmmaker Heather White presented her documentary ‘Who pays the price? The human costs of electronics’ in Eindhoven. The session at the High tech Campus was organised by Dutch trade union confederation FNV Bondgenoten in collaboration with the GoodElectronics Network. The audience was made up of trade union officials and members, both from FNV and other trade unions. The discussion centred on how to tackle the issue of the use of benzene and related occupational illnesses.

‘Who pays the price’ screened at High Tech Campus Eindhoven

On Friday March 21, filmmaker Heather White presented her documentary ‘Who pays the price? The human costs of electronics’ in Eindhoven. The session at the High tech Campus was organised by Dutch trade union confederation FNV Bondgenoten in collaboration with the GoodElectronics Network. The audience was made up of trade union officials and members, both from FNV and other trade unions. The discussion centred on how to tackle the issue of the use of benzene and related occupational illnesses.

The documentary ‘Who Pays the Price? The human costs of electronics’ reveals the hazards of the electronics industry in China profiling workers poisoned by chemicals and their struggle for compensation. The documentary was well received by the attendants of the Eindhoven session who work at or are involved in Dutch electronics companies like Philips, ASML and NXP. The discussion touched on the availability of safe alternatives for benzene, which are available at low cost. However, up until now, the use of benzene in the electronics industry in low wage production countries like China persists, despite the well-known health hazards. Highly problematic is that most workers do not know their rights with regard to health and safety on the work floor and are afraid to lose their job if they stand up for their rights.

The documentary was launched as part of a broader campaign in the US by progressive consumer organisation Green America in collaboration with the labor research group China Labor Watch (CLW), specifically targeting Apple. Apple’s response to the documentary so far has been meek, saying that “it will follow up on the issue”.

The Eindhoven attendants are planning to address the Boards of the respective companies they are involved in to inform them about the documentary, as well as about the upcoming event of FNV Mondiaal (see below).

Ban Benzene Tour

On April 28 and 29, one of the workers portrayed in the documentary, will be visiting the Netherlands, together with a spokesperson of the Ban Benzene Campaign. Despite his weak condition, Mr YiYeting will engage in a  European tour to make a plea for the banning of benzene. FNV Mondiaal and the GoodElectronics network will jointly organise an expert meeting.

Stay informed about the programme through the FNV Mondiaal and GoodElectronics websites.

Who Pays the Price reveals the hazards of the electronics industry in China profiling workers poisoned by chemicals and their struggle for compensation. In just a few weeks’ time, the documentary and campaign were covered in the media over 330 times.