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Three Thousand Workers Strike in Jordan Sewing for Wal-Mart, Gloria Vanderbilt, and GAP; Workers Beaten by Police

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Three thousand foreign guest workers, 50 percent of them young women — 1,500 from Sri Lanka, 900 from Bangladesh, 400 from India and 100 from Nepal — have been on strike against Classic Fashion Apparel Industry (in Al Hassan Industrial City, Irbid, Jordan) since Monday, December 10, 2007.  The situation is critical.  At least 10 workers were beaten today by the police.  Before going on strike, the workers had written to the Jordanian Ministry of Labor seeking help, but received no response.

  • Workers paid less than half the wages legally due them, earning a take-home wage of just $30.95 a week for a minimum of 78 hours of work, while they should have been paid at least $64.88.
  • Routine 12 1/2 to 14 1/2-hour shifts, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00, 9:00, or 10:00 p.m., seven days a week, with at most two days off each month.  Workers are at the factory 80 1/2 to 93 1/2 hours a week.
  • Two young women report being raped by factory management.
  • Managers routinely shout and curse at the workers and even slap and beat them for falling behind in their production goal or making minor errors.
  • Workers say they are locked in the factory and afraid that if a fire breaks out they will be trapped.
  • The bathrooms are filthy.
  • Factory dorms are very cold, lack heat, and are seriously overcrowded with 12 people crammed into each room.
  • Workers describe the factory food as too little and often stale, with an “awful” taste.
  • Factory management does not pay medical expenses and does not respect the workers’ legal right to 14 days paid annual vacation.
  • Workers are paid just 15 cents for each pair of jeans they sew for Wal-Mart and Gloria Vanderbilt.

Click Here to Read about Past Violations in the Classic Fashion Apparel Industry factory.

PLEASE HELP!

Please ask the Jordanian Government to intervene immediately and to bring the Classic factories into strict compliance with all Jordanian labor laws.

Ask Wal-Mart, Gloria Vanderbilt, and GAP to clean up their contractor’s plant.

HRH Prince Zeid Ra’ad

Ambassador of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan to the US

Embassy of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan

3504 International Drive, N.W.

Washington, D.C. 20008

Telephone number: (202) 966 – 2664

Fax number: (202) 966 – 3110
E-mail: HKJEmbassyDC@jordanembassyus.org

Lee Scott

President & CEO

Wal-Mart Stores

702 Southwest 8th Street

Bentonville, AR 72716

FAX: 501-621-2063

Gloria Vanderbilt:

Wesley R. Card, President & CEO

Jones Apparel Group Corporate Offices

1411 Broadway

New York, NY 10018

Tel: (212) 642-3860

Fax: (212) 703-9154

Glenn K. Murphy, Chairman and CEO

Gap Inc. Headquarters

Two Folsom Street

San Francisco, CA 94105

tel: (650) 952-4400

fax: (415) 427-2553



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