Samsung: No underage workers employed at HEG Electronics
With watchdog group China Labor Watch (CLW) noting in a last-month report that at least seven below-16 children were employed by Samsung's partner, HEG Electronics, it was clarified by Samsung on Monday that it had not found any underage workers in the supplier's China-based factory.
Samsung said that it had sent a team of investigators to China to find out whether HEG Electronics was guilty of child labor abuses, and had found that all the workers presently employed at the production facility are of a legal working age.
According to the investigation-related details shared by Samsung, the investigators had found that while none of the HEG Electronics employees was under the age of 16 years, there were some student workers and interns - below 18 years, but above 16 years - who were working at the company.
However, Samsung also said that its investigation team had come across instances of hazardous work practices as well as inadequate management at HEG Electronics; and added that it intends launching on-site inspections of 105 of its Chinese suppliers.
While clarifying that no underage workers had been employed at HEG Electronics, Samsung said in a statement that it holds itself as well as its supply partners to "the highest standards," and has "a zero tolerance policy on child labor violations."
Samsung also added that it would conduct field audits for making sure that all its Chinese facilities "are compliant with applicable labor laws and Samsung's labor and employment right policies."