The Dark Side of the Toyota Prius



The Dark Side of the Toyota Prius

The report alleges that Toyota exploits guest workers, mostly shipped in from China and Vietnam. According to the NLC, these workers are “stripped of their passports and often forced to work — including at subcontract plants supplying Toyota — 16 hours a day, seven days a week, while being paid less than half the legal minimum wage.†Workers are forced to live in company dormitories and deported for complaining about poor treatment, the report finds.

Low-wage temporary workers make up one-third of Toyota’s Prius assembly-line workers, mostly in the auto-parts supply chain. They are signed to contracts for periods as short as four months, and are paid only 60 percent of a full-time employee’s wage.

Parts plants run by subcontractors advertise standard, nine-hour, five-day-a-week jobs. But according to the NLC, “the typical shift was 15 to 16.5 hours a day, from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. or 1:00 a.m.â€

In 2002, Kenichi Uchino, 30, died while working at the “green†Tsutsumi plant that assembles the Prius. During the 13th hour of a routine 14-hour day, Uchino collapsed on the shop floor of the internationally lauded “sustainable†factory, which uses sulfur-oxide-eating paint and boasts 5 percent emissions reductions. A Japanese court ruled that Uchino’s death was caused by exhaustion from overwork.

His wife, Hiroko Uchino, described a grueling lifestyle that included an 85-hour workweek prior to his death. The NLC published his time cards, which reveal that he was “putting in 106.5 to 155 hours of overtime … in the 30 days leading up to his death.â€

Much of this overtime went unpaid. (Toyota explained Kenichi’s extra hours as “voluntary quality control activities,†says the report.) But in court, his survivors were able to win pension payments.


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Go's to show that a capitalist pig is a capitalist pig no matter how you dress him up. Maybe some day people will understand that. In the mean time the ruling elite have us too busy fighting amongst ourselves to ever be able to bring some change....real change,not McBama "change"
Naturally the apologists will have an excuse for this type of exploitation. :down: