Sweatshops and Respect for Persons

Business Ethics Quarterly 13 (2):221-242 (2003)
Abstract
This article applies the Kantian doctrine of respect for persons to the problem of sweatshops. We argue that multinational enterprises are properly regarded as responsible for the practices of their subcontractors and suppliers. We then argue that multinational enterprises have the following duties in their offshore manufacturing facilities: to ensure that local labor laws are followed; to refrain from coercion; to meet minimum safety standards; and to provide a living wage for employees. Finally, we consider and reply to the objection that improving health and safety conditions and providing a living wage will cause greater harm than good.
Keywords Sweatshops  Exploitation
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