Disney has launched its own investigation after claims that some of its most popular toys are manufactured in a factory in China that utilizes child labor, a substandard working environment, dangerous chemical usage, arbitrary salaries, and forced and unpaid overtime, according to the Guardian. The factory reportedly in question is called Sturdy Products and is located in the city of Shenzhen, which is situated in the Guangdong Province in Southern China, just north of Hong Kong. In addition to Disney, Sturdy Products makes products for Walmart and Mattel.
The alleged substandard working environment was reported by the nonprofit organization Sacom (Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehavior). Among the most shocking of the alleged violations is the employment of children as young as fourteen, customary excessive overtime, worker mistreatment, substandard working conditions and the payment of workers to provide misleading information during audits. Reportedly, one woman jumped to her death after being yelled at too many times by management. According to the Guardian, some of the toys made in the Sturdy Products factory include the Thomas the Tank Engine range, Matchbox cars, Cars, Toy Story, Barbie and Fisher Price toys, Scrabble and Hot Wheels.
Although companies based in the United States are not required to abide by the same overtime and labor laws when they do business elsewhere, stories like this raise questions about the possibility of corporate wrongdoing in the United States as well. Allegedly, these corporations did business through a factory that regularly broke laws and cheated workers out of both safety and compensation.
While overtime and labor laws are very strict in the United States, companies often fail to correctly compensate their employees for overtime. If you believe that you may be misclassified or otherwise wronged by your employer, contact a committed overtime attorney by filling out the form on the right to determine if you are eligible to file a lawsuit to recover lost wages.