Added Apr 2, 2020

    asos.jpg is a British online fashion retailer primarily aimed at young adults. The company was founded in 2000 in London and ships to 196 countries! The primary stake holder, Anders Povlsen has an estimated net worth of more than $11 billion.

    • Multiple Asos employees and warehouse workers have come forward alleging that the company is disallowing them to wear protective equipment while on the job. Due to the nature of the warehouse, these employees are working in very tight quarters to one another.
    • One Facebook post from a union group called GMB revealed that as many as three ambulances were called to one ASOS fulfillment center in a single day over an alleged COVID-19 outbreak within the warehouse.
    • Asos’ CEO has disputed these claims from his twitter account.

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    Added Jul 10, 2020

    boohoo.jpg is a UK-based fast fashion website for teens and young adults. Founded in 2006, Boohoo has grown in popularity offering buyers over 36,000 products and generating £856.9m in sales on 2019.

    • On July 5th, 2020, The Sunday Times revealed that workers at Boohoo were being paid as little as £3.50 an hour ($4.40), an amount significantly less than the £8.20 ($10.30) U.K. national minimum wage. This information came after an undercover reporter spent two days working in the factory.
    • Since the news of this “modern day slavery” came to light, the share price of Boohoo has fallen by nearly 50% from $5.24 in mid June to $2.64 on July 8th, 2020.

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  • Cargill, Inc.

    Added May 18, 2020


    Cargill, Inc. is a U.S. based privately held global corporation that focuses on purchasing and trading agricultural commodities. Founded in 1865, it is the largest privately held corporation in the United States in terms of revenue. In 2018, their revenue exceeded $114 billion. Cargill employs over 166,000 employees in 66 countries. A subsidiary of Cargill Inc, Cargill Meat Solutions, recently came under fire for employee mistreatment during Covid-19.

    • The meatpacking industry has always had a notorious reputation for poor working conditions and Covid-19 has only made this more apparent. Currently meat and poultry employees have among the highest illness rates of all manufacturing employees and are the least likely to report said illnesses for fear of repercussions.
    • At Cargill’s High River slaughterhouse, supervisors were given N95 masks and plastic face shields while workers claim it was weeks before they were even given paper and/or cloth face masks. 900 of the plants 2,200 employees became ill with Covid-19.
    • Cargill decided to not tell employees about their colleagues who were falling ill in an effort to keep everyone working. In fact, one Cargill meat plant didn’t tell employees about the illness racing through the plant until 130 employees had already tested positive. One worker even stated that he was told to remove his mask because “it was creating unnecessary fears among plant employees”. A few weeks later that worker died of Covid-19.
    • According Bloomberg who interviewed 32 workers, supervisors were telling symptomatic employees without high fevers to simply take acetaminophen and keep working.

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  • GameStop

    Added May 1, 2020


    GameStop is the world’s largest video game retail chain. The company is headquartered in Grapevine, TX and has over 5,800 retail stores throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe.

    • GameStop tried to defy orders and argue that it was essential after it was told to shut down. It remained open until March 21st.
    • In a memo from GameStop, employees were told to “tape a GameStop plastic bag over their hand and arm” while handling credit cards.

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  • Hobby Lobby

    Added Apr 4, 2020

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    Hobby Lobby is a private for-profit corporation which owns a chain of American arts and crafts stores. Hobby Lobby was first established in 1972 and has grown to over 900 locations within the United States. Hobby Lobby CEO, David Green, has an estimated net worth of over $7 billion.

    • Hobby Lobby has been under constant scrutiny in the past from multiple scandals. Some of the more prominent scandals that Hobby Lobby has been under fire for in recent years are the illegal antiquities trading scandal, the health insurance scandal, and the Dead Sea Scrolls scandal.
    • When Covid-19 first emerged, Hobby Lobby CEO, David Green, wrote a letter to his staff urging employees tocontinue working despite wide scale shutdowns of similar business around the United States. Green even allegedly cited in his letter that his wife “received word from god” that it would be ok to stay open and keep working.

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  • Holland America Line

    Added May 13, 2020

    Holland America Line

    Holland America Line is a cruise line headquartered in Seattle, Washington, and offering cruises throughout the world on its 15 ships.

    • Due to travel restrictions, many crew members have been stuck on cruise ships since the outbreak of the corona virus. However, Holland America has opted not to pay those crew members who are not necessary for the essential operations of the ships, leaving employees stranded without pay on a ship with no opportunity to try and find employment elsewhere.
    • It should be noted that other cruise lines with employees in the same situation opted to pay stranded employees for some length of extra time. For example, Royal Caribbean extended pay such employees for an extra month.

    More info about Holland America Line...

  • JBS Holdings

    Added May 8, 2020


    JBS USA Holdings is an American food processing company that is wholly owned by Brazilian Company, JBS S.A. JBS is the world’s largest processor of beef and pork, raking in more the $50 billion in annual sales. JBS USA is headquartered in Greeley, CO.

    • The meatpacking industry has always had a notorious reputation for poor working conditions and Covid-19 has only made this more apparent. Currently meat and poultry employees have among the highest illness rates of all manufacturing employees and are the least likely to report said illnesses for fear of repercussions.
    • JBS failed to provide PPE equipment to their workers during the Covid-19 outbreak. Furthermore, they also did not properly inform their workers about the virus or the virus’ presence within their plants. A daughter of a JBS worker who was diagnosed with Covid-19, stated that “JBS officials failed to immediately inform workers of COVID cases at the plant and ignored her calls when her father was diagnosed.”
    • Currently, a JBS facility in Grand Island, Nebraska has chosen to remain open even though 7.5 of every 1,000 workers have tested positive.
    • It should also be noted that recently certain JBS plants have started to implement preventative measures including providing masks, staggering shifts and breaks, temperature check, plexiglass dividers and daily cleanings.

    More info about JBS Holdings...

  • Smithfield Foods

    Added May 11, 2020

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    Smithfield Foods is a meat-processing company headquartered in Smithfield, Virginia. Smithfield Foods was founded in 1936 and is now the largest pig and pork producer in the world. Smithfield owns over 500 farms in the US and also has contracts with another 2,000 independent farms. Internationally, the company has facilities in Mexico, Poland, Romania, Germany, and the United Kingdom. In 2013 the WH Group of China purchased Smithfield Foods for $4.72 billion, the largest Chinese acquisition of an American company to date.

    • The meatpacking industry has always had a notorious reputation for poor working conditions and Covid-19 has only made this more apparent. Currently meat and poultry employees have among the highest illness rates of all manufacturing employees and are the least likely to report said illnesses for fear of repercussions. It has even been reported that some of the Smithfield locations have been refusing to let their employees use the bathroom, even to wash their hands, which is of the biggest ways to reduce the spread of Coronavirus.
    • A 50-year-old employee at Smithfield’s Sioux Falls plant told USA TODAY that there’s no way to stay 6 feet from co-workers on the production line, in the cafeteria or in the locker room. Further, when he started feeling sick (after multiple employees he worked with tested positive for Covid-19) and approached his supervisor, he was told that “he was ok and needed to work”. Soon after he tested positive for Covid-19. Many workers have shared similar stories, stating that they do not believe Smithfield’s cares about them or their health during this time, only their bottom line.
    • Smithfield’s Sioux Falls Plant shut down its operations on April 12. By this point the plant already had more than 200 confirmed cases of Covid-19. Soon after their numbers swelled to nearly 900 infected employees.

    More info about Smithfield Foods...

  • Starbucks

    Added May 13, 2020


    Starbucks is a publicly traded, multinational chain of coffeehouses and roastery reserves. Founded in 1971 as a small coffee shop in Pike Place Market, the company has since grown to over 30,000 locations in 77 countries. As a nod to their origin, Starbucks is still headquartered in Seattle, Washington. Starbucks employs nearly 300,000 people and generates around $24B in revenue annually.

    • Starbucks came under fire in early June of 2020 when they sent a memo to their employees that they were not allowed to wear Black Lives Matter clothing or accessories to work. Starbucks reasoning was that wearing clothing and accessories highlighting Black Lives Matter could be misunderstood and potentially incite violence. However, this point was quickly contested when employees pointed out that Starbucks does permit employees to wear accessories that promote marriage equality and LGBTQ rights.
    • A week after Starbucks had sent the memo banning Black Lives Matter clothing, they decided to reverse their decision and allow employees to wear clothing of accessories in favor of the Black Lives Matter movement.
    • Starbucks has had other scandals in the past, most notably, another instance of racial injustice that took place in a Philadelphia Starbucks. In 2018, two black men were sitting peacefully in a Starbucks when an employee called the cops on the men as they had “not ordered anything from the store”. When officers arrived, the two men calmly explained to the officer that they were waiting for a third friend to join them. The third friend did indeed arrive shortly after but the officers still arrested the two men on “suspicion of trespassing”.
    • On March 20, 2020, Starbucks announced a generous policy whereby employees in the US and Canada would be paid in full for up to 30 days of absence during the COVID-19 crisis.
    • However, Starbucks did not come around to this position quickly. A Buzzfeed investigation found numerous cases during the crucial time when the virus was spreading throughout the US where employees showed up to work sick and were not only allowed to serve food and drinks to customers, but were also refused leave by management.
    • Employees during these fraught early days of the virus were unable to take the requisite 2-week quarantine period off of work, undoubtedly enabling the spread of the virus to other employees and customers.

    More info about Starbucks...

  • Tyson Foods

    Added May 9, 2020

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    Tyson Foods is the world’s second largest producer of chicken, beef, and pork. Based in Springdale, AZ, Tyson Foods operates major brands such as Jimmy Dean, Hillshire Farm, Ball Park, and Wright Brand. Tyson Foods employs around 122,000 people and in 2018 ranked 80th on the Fortune 500 list for total revenue, raking in more than $40 billion dollars.

    • The meatpacking industry has always had a notorious reputation for poor working conditions and Covid-19 has only made this more apparent. Currently meat and poultry employees have among the highest illness rates of all manufacturing employees and are the least likely to report said illnesses for fear of repercussions.
    • During Covid-19, Tyson actually implemented faster line speeds at meat processing plants, forcing workers to stand even closer together, often shoulder to shoulder, when Coronavirus was already rampaging through their facilities. Furthermore, Tyson, a billion dollar company, struggled for weeks to secure any sort of PPE equipment for their workers, leaving employees completely vulnerable.
    • Tyson has also announced they are giving out $500 bonuses to frontline workers, which is wonderful, except eligibility for the bonus does depend on attendance. For example, at the Tyson plant in Camilla, the company offered its 2,100 workers a $500 bonus if they worked in April, May and June without missing a single day. As a result, many workers felt encouraged to come to work sick as they wanted to meet the attendance policy for the bonus.
    • Recently, Tyson has implemented protective barriers between workers and has increased it’s short term disability leave to cover 90% of an employees normal pay if an employee is being treated for Coronavirus.

    More info about Tyson Foods...

  • Uber

    Added May 14, 2020

    uber logo.jpg

    Uber is a public U.S. based ridehailing company. Apart from their popular Uber ridesharing service, Uber also offers food delivery (UberEats) and a micromobility platform for users looking to share electric bikes and scooters. The company is based in San Francisco and has operations in over 785 cities worldwide.

    • During the Covid-19 crisis, Uber chose to layoff over 3,700 people over a mass Zoom call. While lay offs are inevitable during this time, Uber showed that they did not care enough about their workers to lay them off in a more considerate manner.
    • Uber is used to being under the spotlight for immoral business practices. Over the years Uber has been highly criticized for their unfair treatment of drivers, uncomfortable company culture (leading to multiple sexual assault allegations), increasing traffic congestion, disrupting the taxicab business, and for their aggressive strategy in dealing with regulators and city officials. In fact, if you visit the Uber Wikipedia page it reads like a rap sheet for all the times Uber has found themselves in hot water.

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  • Vice Media

    Added Apr 18, 2020


    Vice Media is a US-based digital media and broadcasting company. Vice is a privately-held company worth over $6 billion.

    • A 2018 New York Times expose uncovered a pervasive culture of sexual misconduct at the company.
    • The Times reported on numerous hushed settlements resulting from sexual harrassment and defamation claims by female Vice employees.
    • Other allegations include altering a female reporter's interview without her knowledge in order to directly imply that she desired sexual relations with her interviewee, and multiple cases of sexual harrassment claims being quashed by Vice's HR department.

    More info about Vice Media...