Blutsgeschwister GmbH, Complaint 66

CONCERNING LABOUR STANDARDS
Payment of a living wage
STATUS
Resolved
DATE
2013-12-30

On 30 December the plaintiff contacted FWF’s complaints handler through the QQ Chinese chat service. The plaintiff claimed three month wage was withheld, from 1 Oct to 20 Dec 2013. At the time of hire, the worker agreed with the factory on a wage 3300 RMB per month.
The plaintiff also mentioned 7 other colleagues experience the same delayed payment. The workers are planning to report the case to the local labour bureau.

Findings and conclusions

On 30 December 2013 FWF’s complaints handler in China received a complaints report from a worker working in a factory supplying Blutgeschwister. The complaint related to the standard ‘Payment of a living wage’ which is part of FWF’s Code of Labour Practices.

The plaintiff claimed three 3 month wage was withheld and that 7 other colleagues experience the same delayed payment. The workers are planning to report the case to the local labour bureau. On December 31 FWF informed Blutgeschwister, who took immediate action by instructing management to pay and announcing that this matter will get top priority. On 6 January 2014, management of the factory replied it had indeed difficulties to pay October wages due to tight funds. Management also informed the company the case was reported to the labour bureau.

On 9 January 2014 Blutgeschwister received the message the due wages were paid on 9 January. Both the adequate reponse by Blutgeschwister and the interference of the local labour bureau sped up the process for the factory to not further delay the payment. The affiliate will prioritize the payment of living wage issues in the Corrective Action Plan. FWF’s complaints handler has verified with the plaintiff on 6 February 2014 that all the due wages have been paid.

Overview of the complaint investigation

2013-12-30 Investigation

On 31 December FWF informed Blutgeschwister about the case. FWF checked with the plaintiff if he was willing to disclose his identity which was the case. The plaintiff reported he intends to leave the factory and therefore agreed to disclose his identity.
Blutgeschwister responded immediately and in consultation with FWF, took the following steps:
1. On 3 January, Blutgeschwister informed the supplier about the complaint
received.
2. The affiliate discussed the specific case of the worker, but in addition
stressed this seemed to be a collective issue experienced by several workers.
3. Blutgeschwister instructed the management board to pay the outstanding wages directly, so workers can visit their families on Chinese New Year.
4. Blutgeschwister announced that this matter will get top priority in the CAP
and will be discussed during a meeting in China in February.
On 6 January 2014, management of the factory replied it had indeed difficulties to pay October wages due to tight funds. Management also informed the company the case was reported to the labour bureau.

2013-12-30 Conclusion of the investigation

Based on the above investigation, FWF finds the complaint delayed payment was grounded.

2013-12-30 Remediation

On 9 January 2014 Blutgeschwister received the message the due wages were paid on 9 January. Both the adequate reponse by Blutgeschwister and the interference of the local labour bureau sped up the process for the factory to not further delay the payment.
The affiliate will prioritize the payment of living wage issues in the Corrective Action Plan.

2013-12-30 Verification

FWF’s complaints handler has verified with the plaintiff on 6 February 2014 that all the due wages have been paid.

2013-12-30 Evaluation of the complaint

The plaintiff thanked FWF and the affiliate for their involvement in solving this case. The worker indicated to contact FWF again should there be any problems in the future.

2013-12-30 Resolved

This complaint is resolved.