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Sweatshops and Respect for Persons

Denis G. Arnold and Norman E. Bowie
Business Ethics Quarterly
Vol. 13, No. 2, Employment (Apr., 2003), pp. 221-242
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3857660
Page Count: 22
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Sweatshops and Respect for Persons
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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 off-shore 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.

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