Ethics watchdog probing Nike Canada, Dynasty Gold
Canada’s ethics watchdog announced Tuesday probes to determine whether Nike Canada and a gold mining operation are benefitting from the use of forced Uyghur labor in China.
Sheri Meyerhoffer of the Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise said the investigations were launched after complaints from 28 organizations were filed with her office. Canada prohibits the importation of goods produced in whole or part by forced or compulsory labor.
An Australian think tank alleged that Nike Canada has supply chains with six Chinese companies whose products use Uyghur forced labor.
The Australian Strategic Policy Institute also alleged in a separate charge that Dynasty Gold’s mining operation in Xinjiang uses coerced Uyghur workers.
Meyehoffer looked into both complaints and decided there were grounds to launch investigations.
“On their face, the allegations made by the complainants raise serious issues regarding the possible abuse of the internationally recognized right to be free from forced labour,” Meyerhoffer said in her assessment of the allegations made public Tuesday. “I have decided to launch investigations into these complaints in order to get the facts and recommend the appropriate actions. I have not pre-judged the outcome of the investigations. We will await the results and we will publish final reports with my recommendations.”
The parent company of Nike Canada denied any part of its shoes were produced by Uyghur forced labor, while Dynasty said it has no operational control over the mine in China.
In 2022, the UN said China committed “serious human rights violations” against Uyghurs and other Muslims, and that their forced detention in camps may constitute crimes against humanity, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reported.
As many as 1.8 million Uyghurs and other Turkic Muslims are thought to be held in internment camps in China.???????