Motorola Cut & Run to Avoid Responsibility for Workers’ Rights

Hivac is a second-tier supplier of Motorola making lenses for Motorola phones out of Nanshan, Shenzhen Special Economic Zone in southern China. Hivac used to receive up to 50% of its orders from Motorola.

In public, Motorola asserts it is committed to ensuring its suppliers do not violate workers’ rights ( In principle, Motorola – “a progressive corporate citizen” – requires its suppliers to enforce a code of conduct, and Motorola audits factories to ensure its suppliers comply with the code. However, SACOM found serious violations of workers’ rights at Hivac. One of the poisoned workers had to abort her child due to complications caused by the n-hexane poisoning. SACOM first sent a letter directly to Edward J. Zander, Chairman and CEO of Motorola, and reported the failure of Hivac to implement Motorola’s code of conduct in August 2006 (for the 11-page report in English, visit SACOM, “Hivac Startech Film Window (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd.: An Investigative Report on Labor Conditions;” see also SOMO, “The High Cost of Calling.”).

After the SACOM report, Motorola retained Intertek to conduct a CSR audit at Hivac. Instead of taking corrective actions, Motorola withdrew orders from Hivac as a direct result of pressure on Motorola to enforce workers’ rights at Hivac. Cutting & running is the worst response to workers’ rights violations. By December 2006, some 300 of the 700 production workers at Hivac have had lost their jobs.

SACOM strongly demands Motorola to respond immediately and to fulfill its social responsibilities:

Motorola, Inc. Corporate Offices

1303 E. Algonquin Road, Schaumburg, Illinois60196U.S.A.

+ 1 847 576 5000

John Plyler

Manager, Supply Chain Global Corporate Citizenship

David Buck

Director of Global Procurement

(1)to engage Hivac to carry out efficient remedial procedures in the workplace;

(2)to monitor the implementation of the corrective action plans under the observation of independent NGOs;

(3)to compensate all the affected workers at Hivac according to the standard of the law [compensation should depend on length of service];

(4)to give every Chinese worker at every Motorola supplier a written employment contract and a copy of Motorola’s Code of Conduct in Chinese;

(5)to collaborate with independent NGOs to provide workers at all Motorola suppliers with labor rights training;

(6)  to respect workers’ right to bargain collectively by facilitating the formation of mechanisms of worker representation at all Motorola suppliers.