Observations on the world today.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Should We Boycott? 

Coke Benefiting From Child Labor in Sugar Cane Fields
Coca-Cola and other large businesses are indirectly benefiting from the use of child labor in sugarcane fields in El Salvador, according to a new report released here Thursday by Human Rights Watch (HRW) which is calling on the company to take more responsibility to ensure that such abuses are halted.

From 5,000 to 30,000 Salvadoran children, some as young as eight years old, are working in El Salvador's sugarcane plantations where injuries, particularly severe cuts, are common, according to the report, 'Turning a Blind Eye: Hazardous Labor in El Salvador's Sugarcane Cultivation.'

Under Salvadoran law, 18 is the minimum age for dangerous work and 14 for most other kinds. But the relevant provisions generally go unenforced in part because the children are hired as "helpers," rather than employees that would entitle them to certain protections.
Umm, I'm not sure if this is really a hugely significant issue.

Besides, if we ban Coke for using Salvadoran sugar, does the ban also apply to Diet Coke?


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