Serop2's Conscientious Action Page
Updated May 25, 2002


    The struggle for social justice is complex; often, we unknowingly support the evils against which we are fighting.  Although it is impossible for any one person to solve all the world's problems individually, all of us should try our best not to further the injustices we see.  One of the greatest problems facing our world today is the mass exploitation of workers.  Ever since the Industrial Revolution, large companies have sought to pay as little as possible to the fworkers who produce the products these companies sell.  Over time, though, both workers and the governments of the countries in which they worked tried to put an end to exploitation by the twin means of unionization and labor legislation.
    Thankfully, both unions and labor laws have eradicated exploitation in most of Western Europe--and to some degree, in the United States--but the new global market has opened the doors for the exploitation of the peoples of developing countries all over the world.  Without the benefit of either unions or effective labor laws, these peoples toil, often silently, in wretched conditions that we in the Western world would never accept in our own countries--if we knew about them.  This corporate colonialism has had horrid effects on people's lives.  Many workers are not allowed to take breaks, use rest rooms, or even stand up at their jobs without risking being fired.  The wages these people earn are obviously much lower than what they would be in the closely monitored parts of the developed world, and many workers do not earn enough to even support their families.
    One of the best examples of this exploitation is the current situation in the US territory of Saipan.  Because it is a US territory, products made in Saipan can legally carry the "Made in the USA" logo.  Unfortunately, Saipan is the only US territory in which federal labors laws do not apply.  What is worse, many of the workers there are indentured servants.  "Recruiting" companies from Japan often lure poor Chinese women with the promise that they will be taken to the United States and given good jobs.  These women then pay a large fee for transportation, but instead of being taken to the continental US, they are shipped to Saipan.  There, they are required to work either as factory workers in sweatshops or as prostitutes in the territory's booming sex industry.  Many of these young women (often as young as fourteen years old) wish they could go home to their native countries, but they are not allowed to because they have signed contracts forbidding them from doing so.  The factories in which they work are rarely unionized, and those who call for unionization are often abused verbally, physically, and sexually.


    I created this web page because I think it's important for people to know that the clothes they wear, the appliances they use, and the food they eat may be the end result of a complex system of exploitation.  Unfortunately, most of us never know that we're participating in this exploitation because very few people talk about it.  Our corparate media have almost completely ignored the literally tens of thousands of workers being exploited around the world for our benefit.  One of the biggest reasons you'll never hear anything about this issue on television news is that networks are sponsored by the companies that have the worst records of human rights abuses.
    The first step in understanding any problem is to learn as much about it as possible.  At the bottom of this page, there are links to other sites explaining specific labor and environmental issues.  Once we know which companies are guilty of exploitation, it is important for us to make our voices heard to these companies.  And the best way to do this is the phone, fax, email, and write the CEOs of these corporations.  A single complaint to a company like Nike or Gap will not do much, but if many people complain, then these companies will start to listen; the last thing they want is a public relations disaster.
    The next (and most difficult) step in refusing to participate in exploitation is to become a conscientious consumer.  This means boycotting companies whose workers have called official boycotts and being generally aware of the products you buy and where (and how) they were made.  To reverse the famous Nike motto:  Just don't do it.  Don't be a blind consumer.  Read the tags.  Pay attention to the people handing out flyers outside of malls and retail stores.  Shop accordingly.  Let me emphasize that the goal of leafleting and boycotting is not punishment of guilty companies.  We are not calling for an end to business; we are calling for an end to exploitative business.
    Below is a list of companies that I keep my eye on.  Depending on how much time I have in the near future, I will try to update this list whenever possible.  By the time you read this list, some of these companies may have changed their practices.  Check the date at the top of this page and try to find a more updated list if this page is more than a month old.  With each company, I have included the following information whenever possible:  names, postal and email addresses, phone and fax numbers, and whether an official boycott has been called against this company.  (See the Quick Boycott List section.)  I have also given a summary of my reasons for being wary of and/or boycotting each company.  This list is not set in stone, and there are bound to be mistakes.  Please email me or sign the guestbook if you have any new information or if you have any questions or comments about this list.



    As I mentioned earlier, the above list is probably far from complete, so it is important to always stay informed by visiting other sites (some are listed below) and to pay attention to the news.  Labor issues rarely make it into the mainstream media, but when they do, you can be pretty sure that the violations are serious.  Many people ask me what they should do with the products they have already purchased from boycotted companies.  If you have already bought something from a particular company, you have already supported that company, so using the product in the future does not really hurt anyone.  Some people throw away the products they already have, but I see this as needless waste.  If you're worried that you're advertising for a company by wearing its clothing, you can always alter the clothes so that the logo doesn't show or make your own design.  (For example, you can write the word sucks under the Nike logo.)  And if you still don't want to wear your Nike clothes anymore, then give them to the poor.  That way, at least someone will benefit from them.  Finally, boycotts only apply to newly bought products, so buying clothes or CDs secondhand will not give any money to the original producers.
    I have received criticism saying that this page is too negative and asking why I don't offer possible solutions; raising awareness about what's wrong is the first step in improving any situation.  And although these boycotts are negative (not buying something), their message is positive.  That is why it is so important to contact these companies and tell them you're boycotting and why.  That way, you're trying to enact a solution.  If you still want solutions, the best advice I can offer you is to look for clothing with Union Made labels.  There is also a list of union made products at Union Label & Service Trades Department.  The organizations and individuals below may also have information about what you should purchase.

Useful Contacts

Actors' Equity Association
165 W. 46th St.
New York, NY 10036
15th Fl.
(212) 869-8530
Fax:  (212) 719-9815

Adbusters Magazine--The Media Foundation
1243 West 7th Ave.
Vancouver, BC V6H 1B7
(800) 663-1243
(604) 736-9401
Fax:  (604) 737-6021

Alternative Radio (AR)
P.O. Box 551
Boulder, CO 80306
(800) 444-1977

American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO)
815 16th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 637-5000
Fax:  (202) 637-5058

American Federation of Television and Radio Artists (AFTRA)
260 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10016-2402
(212) 532-0800
Fax:  (212) 532-2242

American History Sweatshop Exhibition

Amnesty International
322 8th Ave.
New York, NY 10001
(212) 807-8400
Fax:  (212) 463-9193
Fax:  (212) 627-1451

Anti-Slavery International
Thomas Clarkson House
The Stableyard
Broomgrove Road
London  SW9 9TL
+44 (0)20 7501 8920
Fax:  +44 (0)20 7738 4110

Asian Immigrant Women Advocates
310 Eighth St., #301
(510) 268-0192
Fax:  (510) 268-0194

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA)
815 16th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 974-8051
Fax:  (202) 974-8056

Baby Food Action Campaign
Narelle Clark

Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union (BCTGM)
10401 Connecticut Ave.
Kensington, MD 20895
(301) 933-8600

Ballona Wetlands Land Trust
P.O. Box 5623
Los Angeles, CA 90296
(310) 338-1413
Fax:  (310) 399-2920
c/o ATMedia
37 W. 20th St., Ste. 1007
New York, NY 10011
(212) 463-7437

Burma Campaign UK
Third Fl.
Bickerton House
25/27 Bickerton Rd.
N19 5JT
0207 281 7377
Fax:  0207 272 3559

The Bus Riders Union
3780 Wilshire Blvd., Ste. 1200
Los Angeles, CA 90010
(213) 387-2800
Fax:  (213) 387-3500

Californians for Justice
755 Pine Ave.
Long Beach, CA 90813
(562) 951-1015
Fax:  (562) 951-9444

Campaign for Labor Rights
1247 E Street, S.E.
Washington, DC 20003
(541) 344-5410
Fax:  (541) 431-0523

Care for the Caregivers:  United Food and Commercial Workers Union
1775 K St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20006
(202) 466-1525
Fax:  (202) 466-1562

Central American Resource Center (CARECEN)
Angela Sanbrano, Executive Director
(213) 385-7800, ext. 154
Fax:  (213) 385-1094

Citizen Trade Campaign
Washington, DC
(202) 879-4298

Clean Clothes Campaign
P.O. Box 11584
1001 GN Amsterdam
The Netherlands
Fax:  +31-20-4122786

Coalition to Abolish the Fur Trade (CAFT)
P.O. Box 21780
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 328-0736
Fax:  (202) 328-0774

Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA)
Luke E. Williams, Jr., Executive Director
1521 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 353-1333
Fax:  (213) 353-1344

Coalition for Justice in the Maquiladoras
530 Bandera Rd.
San Antonio, TX 78228
(210) 732-8957
Fax:  (210) 732-8324

Coalition of Immokalee Workers
P.O. Box 603
Immokalee, FL 34143
(941) 657-8311
Fax:  (941) 657-5055

Coalition LA
2500 Wilshire Blvd., #908
Los Angeles, CA 90057
(213) 637-0313

Communications Workers of America (CWA)
501 3rd St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20001-2797
(202) 434-1100
Fax:  (202) 434-1279

Communities for a Better Environment (CBE)
5610 Pacific Blvd., Ste. 203
Huntington Park, CA 90255
(323) 826-9771
Fax:  (323) 826-7079

Community Coalition, South Central Youth Empowered through Action (SC-YEA)
8101 S. Vermont Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90044
(323) 750-9087
Fax:  (323) 750-9640

Co-op America
1612 K St., N.W.
Ste. 600
Washington, DC 20006
(800) 58-GREEN
Fax:  (202) 331-8166

Corporate Watch

Delmarva Poultry Justice Alliance
Rev. Jim Lewis
257 Oyster Shell Cove
Bethany Beach, DE 19930
(302) 537-5318

Democracy Now!

Development Gap
Attn:  Karen Hansen-Kuhn
927 15th St., N.W., 4th Fl.
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 898-1566

Diane Middleton Foundation
461 W. 6th St., #222
San Pedro, CA 90731-2749
(310) 519-7555

Dignity, Rights and Respect Nursing Home Campaign, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)
1313 L St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 898-3386
Fax:  (202) 989-3403

Educating for Justice
Press for Change
415 5th Ave.
Belmar, NJ 07719

Families to Amend California's Three-Strikes (FACTS)
3982 S. Figueroa St., #210
Los Angeles, CA 90037
(213) 746-4844
Fax:  (213) 746-4944

Farm Labor Organizing Committee (FLOC)
1221 Broadway
Toledo, OH 43609
(419) 243-3456
Fax:  (419) 243-5655

Free Burma Coalition
1101 Pennsyvlania Ave., S.E., #204
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 547-5985

Free Speech Radio News (FSRN)

GABRIELA Network, Los Angeles Chapter
P.O. Box 3032
Cerritos, CA 90703-3032
(213) 307-3696

Gainesville Poultry Justice Alliance
St. Michael's Church
1440 Pearce Cir.
Gainesville, GA 30501
(770) 534-3338

Garment Worker Center
1250 S. Los Angeles St., Ste. 206
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(888) 449-6115

Global Exchange
2017 Mission St., #303
San Francisco, CA 94110
(415) 255-7296

The Greenlining Institute
785 Market St., 3rd Fl.
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 284-7200
Fax:  (415) 284-7210

Greenwood Watershed Association
P.O. Box 90
Elk, CA 95432
(707) 877-3405

702 H St., N.W., Ste. 300
Washington, DC 20001
(800) 326-0959
(202) 462-1177
Fax:  (202) 462-4507

Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees International Union (HERE)
1219 28th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 393-4373
Fax:  (202) 333-0468

HERE Local 1
Terrence P. Maloney, Secretary
55 W. Van Buren St., 4th Fl.
Chicago, IL 60605
(312) 663-4373
Fax:  (312) 986-3828

HERE Local 2
Mike Casey, President
209 Golden Gate Ave.
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 864-8770
Fax:  (415) 864-4158

HERE Local 17
312 Central Ave., #444
Minneapolis, MN 55414
(612) 379-4730
Fax:  (612) 379-8698

HERE Local 30
Jef L. Eatchel, Secretary
121 Juniper St.
San Diego, CA 92101
(619) 233-4373
Fax:  (619) 233-4394

HERE Local 40
Nick Worhaug, President
#100-4853 E. Hastings St.
Burnaby, BC V5C 2L1
(604) 291-8211
Fax:  (604) 291-2676

HERE Local 49
Joseph A. McLaughlin, President
1824 Tribute Rd.
Ste. D
Sacramento, CA 95815
(916) 564-4949
Fax:  (916) 564-4950

HERE Local 483
Leonard P. O'Neill, Secretary
702 Forest Ave.
Ste. C
Pacific Grove, CA 93950
(831) 375-2246
Fax:  (831) 375-0459

HERE Local 2850
Jim DuPont, President
548 20th St.
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 893-3181
Fax:  (510) 893-5362

Independent Media Center (IMC)

46 Plympton St.
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 695-2525
Fax:  (617) 695-2626

Institute for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Research (ISBER)
Evely Laser Shlensky
(805) 969-5388
Prof. Richard Appelbaum
(805) 893-7230

Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility
475 Riverside Dr.
Rm. 550
New York, NY 10115
(212) 870-2928
Fax:  (212) 870-2023

International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM)
9000 Machinists Pl.
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772-2687
(301) 967-4500

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW)
1125 15th St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20005
(202) 833-7000
Fax:  (202) 467-6316

International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT)
25 Louisiana Ave., N.W.
Washington, DC 20001
ATTN:  Communications/Website
(202) 624-6800

International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU)
1188 Franklin St., 4th Fl.
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 775-0533
Fax:  (415) 775-1302

International Rivers Network
1847 Berkeley Wy.
Berkeley, CA 94703-9948
(510) 848-1155
Fax:  (510) 848-1008

International Union of Electronic, Electrical, Salaried, Machine and Furniture Workers (IUE)

InterReligious Task Force on Central America (IRTF)
3606 Bridge Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44113
(216) 961-0003
Fax:  (216) 961-0002

Jewish Labor Committee
25 E. 21st St.
New York, NY 10010

Jobs with Justice
501 3rd St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20001-2797
(202) 434-1106
Fax:  (202) 434-1477

Just Economics
1600 Shattuck Ave., #124
Berkeley, CA 94709
(510) 548-4760

Korean Immigrant Workers Advocate (KIWA)
3465 W. 8th St., 2nd Fl.
Los Angeles, CA 90005
(213) 738-9050
Fax:  (213) 738-9919

1929 Martin Luther King, Jr., Wy.
Berkeley, CA 94704
(510) 848-6767
(510) 848-4425
Fax:  (510) 848-3812

3729 Cahuenga Blvd., W.
North Hollywood, CA 91604
(818) 985-2711
(818) 985-5735
Fax:  (818) 763-7526

Labor Party
P.O. Box 53177
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 234-5190
Fax:  (202) 234-5266

Labour Behind the Label Coalition
c/o Maquila Solidarity Network
606 Shaw St.
Toronto, Ontario
Canada, M6G 3L6
(416) 532-8584
Fax:  (416) 532-7688

Latin America Working Group
110 Maryland Ave., N.E.
Washington, DC 20002
(202) 546-7010

Major League Baseball Players Association
12 E. 49th St., 24th Fl.
New York, NY 10017
(212) 826-0808
Fax:  (212) 752-4378

Maquiladora Health & Safety Support Network
P.O. Box 124
Berkeley, CA 94701-0124
(510) 558-1014
Fax:  (510) 525-8951

Marin Health Fund/Public Media Initiative
P.O. Box 5402
Mill Valley, CA 94942
Linda Remy

Mexico Solidarity Network
1247 E St., S.E.
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 544-9355

Mobilization for the Human Family
1325 N. College Ave.
Claremont, CA 91711-3199
(909) 625-8722
Fax:  (909) 625-1820

Movimiento Estudiantil Chicana y Chicano de Aztlan (MEChA) de UCLA
308 Westwood Plaza
414 Kerckhoff Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90024
(310) 206-6452

National Farm Worker Ministry
Ms. Virginia Nesmith
438 N. Skinker Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63130
(314) 726-6470
Mobile Phone:  (314) 323-4002
Fax:  (314) 726-6427

National Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice
1020 West Bryn Mawr Ave., 4th Fl.
Chicago, IL 60660
(773) 728-8400
Fax:  (773) 728-8409

National Labor Committee
275 17th Ave., 15th Fl.
New York, NY 10001
(212) 242-3002

National Mobilization Against SweatShops (NMASS)
P.O. Box 130293
New York, NY 10013-0995
(718) 633-9757
Fax:  (718) 437-6991

Nicaragua Network
(202) 544-9355

North Carolina AFL-CIO
P.O. Box 10805
Raleigh, NC 27605
(919) 833-6678
Fax:  (919) 828-2102

North Carolina Council of Churches
1307 Glenwood Ave., Ste. 162
Raleigh, NC 27605
(919) 828-6501 or (919) 828-6542
Fax:  (919) 828-9697

North Carolina Poultry Justice Alliance
Ms. Deb Young
1556 Lamont Norwood Rd.
Pittsboro, NC 27312
Phone/Fax:  (919) 929-6104

Pacifica Foundation
2390 Champlain St., N.W.
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 588-0999

People of Faith and Organized Labor
Rev. Ted Erickson
HC 64 Box 62B
Ligonier, PA 15658

People United for a Better Oakland (PUEBLO)
1920 Park Blvd.
Oakland, CA 94606
(510) 452-2010
Fax:  (510) 452-2017

Pilipino Workers' Center (PWC)
Phone/Fax:  (213) 384-8014

Pineros y Campesinos Unidos del Noroeste (PCUN)
300 Young St.
Woodburn, OR 97071
(503) 982-0243
Fax:  (503) 982-1031

Progressive Jewish Alliance
5870 W. Olympic Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 761-8350
Fax:  (323) 761-8355

Progressive Los Angeles Network (PLAN)
Occidental College
1600 Campus Rd.
Los Angeles, CA 90041
(323) 259-1458
Fax:  (323) 259-2734

Rainforest Action Network (RAN)
221 Pine St., Ste. 500
San Francisco, CA 94104
(415) 398-4404
Fax:  (415) 398-2732

Raza Womyn de UCLA

Resource Center of the Americas
3019 Minnehaha Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55406
(612) 276-0788

San Juan Citizens Alliance (SJCA)
c/o Western Colorado Congress
Attn:  Gwen Lachelt
863 1/2 Maine Ave.
P.O. Box 2461
Durango, CO 81302
(970) 259-3583
Fax:  (970) 259-8303

Save America's Water
P.O. Box 573
Shawano, WI 54166
(715) 524-5998
Fax:  (715) 524-9958


Screen Actors Guild (SAG)
5757 Wilshire Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA  90036-3600
(323) 954-1600
Fax:  (323) 549-6603

SEIU Local 1877
1247 W. 7th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 680-9567
Fax:  (213) 488-0328

The Sierra Club
85 Second St., 2nd Fl.
San Francisco, CA 94105-3441
(415) 977-5500
Fax:  (415) 977-5799

Students for a Free Tibet, Inc.
735 E. 9th St., #1FW
New York, NY 10009
(212) 358-0071

Student Stop Sweatshops
(202) 785-5690 ext. 231

Swarthmore Conscious Consumers

Sweatshop Watch/Vietnam Labor Watch
310 8th St., Ste. 309
Oakland, CA 94607
(510) 834-8990
Fax:  (510) 834-8974

Tourism Concern
Stapleton House
277-281 Holloway Rd.
N7 8HN
020 7753 3330
020 7753 3331

UCLA Environmental Coalition
(310) 206-4438

Union Label & Service Trades Department

Union of Needletrades, Industrial, and Textile Employees (UNITE)
275 7th Ave., 15th Fl.
New York, NY 10001
(212) 265-7000
Fax:  (212) 265-3415

United Farm Workers of America
United Farm Workers of America, AFL-CIO
Attn.:  Public Action
P.O. Box 62
Keene CA, 93531
(805) 822-5571

U.S./Labor Education in the Americas Project (U.S./LEAP)
P.O. Box 268-290
Chicago, IL 60626
(773) 262-6502
Fax:  (773) 262-6602
Joan Axthelm

United Steelworkers of America (USWA)
AFL-CIO Western Region
1355 Sutter St., Ste. 105
San Francisco, CA 94109
(415) 292-1409

United Students Against Sweatshops (USAS)
Attn:  Ginny Coughlin
1710 Broadway
New York, NY 10019
(212) 265-7000 (ext. 821)
(202) 667-9328

RealNetworks, Inc.
2601 Elliott Ave.
Seattle, WA 98121
Fax:  (206) 674-2696

Westside Greens
2809 Pico Blvd.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
(310) 449-1882

Wetlands Action Network
P.O. Box 1145
Malibu, CA 90265
(310) 456-5604
Fax:  (310) 456-5612

Women of Color Resource Center
2288 Fulton St., Ste. 103
Berkeley, CA 94704-1449
(510) 848-9272
Fax:  (510) 548-3474

Worker Rights Consortium (WRC)
P.O. Box 33695
Washington, DC 20033-3695
Fax:  (202) 778-4519

Working People's Law Center
1475 Echo Park Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 250-5500

Quick Boycott List

    A boycott is only effective if people actually make a conscious effort to avoid buying certain products and services.  To make it easier for concerned individuals to respect various boycotts, I have compiled a list of all the boycotted companies on this page.  Click here to download this list (available in rich text format).  This list does not include all the companies I have mentioned--only those with official boycotts called against them.


See it.
Sign it.

    Please feel free to sign the guestbook.  I appreciate all thoughtful comments, whether congratulatory, critical, or a combination of the two.  I am especially interested in hearing information that might contradict what I have presented here.  Also, if you know of companies or campaigns that I have failed to mention, please let me know.

Add Me!