WRC Factory Investigation

Tex-Ray Swaziland PTY Ltd.

Factory: Tex-Ray Swaziland PTY Ltd.

Key Buyers: Academy and Alfred Dunner, Carter’s, VF, Williamson-Dickie

Year: 2015

Case Summary

The WRC launched its investigation in response to a complaint from a Swazi union federation representing workers at the plant. The complaint alleged that Tex-Ray workers were sickened en masse in an incident of acute chemical poisoning in September, with hundreds of workers requiring treatment at local hospitals and with some suffering serious and lasting health effects. The WRC investigation, which began in mid-September and is ongoing, has faced significant obstacles, including the permanent closure of the factory only weeks after the incident, the consequent departure of many workers for their home villages, the weak and chaotic healthcare infrastructure in Swaziland, and the failure of the factory to properly notify workers of the chemicals being used in the plant, leading to substantial confusion as to what chemical or chemicals in fact were involved.

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