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Saturday, May 15, 2010

Proctor and Gamble

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I've been brushing my teeth recently with Crest. It's a tube we've had since before I made this commitment and just recently I thought, "I bet it's P and G." The next day, after my husband had eaten one too many bowls of free chili on campus and I was rummaging around for that pink chalky stuff that I've been using as a kid I discovered that Pepto is also owned by P and G. And this type of Proctor and Gamble discovery continued to happen. I knew they were the Wal-Mart of the brand industry, but I didn't know how much their presence existed in my own household... Then, I couldn't stop thinking about them. Are the fluffy squares which really do make my toilette transactions so much more humane owned by this non -transparent company? Yep. Boston city water sucks so I'm changing our filter on the tap, and yet again, their damn logo stares up at me. The last straw came when I opened the the kitchen cupboard with a tad too much zealousness and Ted's mega bottle of fiber fell right off the top shelf and rolled under the stove. I'm reaching for it, I grab and ok, P and G, I get it. You've invaded mankind with your stupid logo and it's like you've been following me as if you want me to find you out. Well I'm gonna. It's time to pull out the big guns and get the effing DL on Proctor and Gamble, America. They already get on my nerves and I have big suspicions that they do not practice fairly. I'll get to that in a second, but here's the list of some, just some of who they own:

Herbal Essences
Old Spice
Cover Girl
Head and Shoulders
Pepto Bismol
Oral B
Tide and those are just the most popular. They also own a slew of international companies, a few of which look familiar too me such as: Fairy, Lenor, Rindex. Pretty sure those are in the UK.

Here's what I read from Zumer.
(Zumer is a new discovery of mine. They have the largest online, corporate responsibility database, kinda like the Wikipedia of Business Ratings. Consumers, students, whole universities who care about corporate responsiblity are researching and posting info. I think Zumer does check it all though to be sure its legitimate. More info on Zumer to come.

In their words: "Zumer is a business that provides information on corporate responsibility to companies and consumers. We are a small business that has spent the past three years working with universities to collect and analyze the corporate responsibility initiatives of companies. Zumer was founded to empower consumers by providing data on how everyday brands are performing in social and environmental aspects. By providing this information to the consumer in a meaningful way it will influence people's purchasing habits, which will in turn encourage companies to invest in their environmental and social initiatives.Ultimately it is our community of users who research, rate, and drive the content in Zumer. Also unique to Zumer is the personalized filter that delivers customized rankings reflecting what is important to each individual user. ")

According to China Labour Watch, (another great resource, their own entry is coming soon!) employees are almost always classified as “temporary workers” in the Guangzhou Procter & Gamble factory which gives them no rights. They are forced to work 12 hour shifts six days a week, with just four days off per month. The P&G facility does not permit paid holiday for weddings or funerals. The workers in question do not receive any “social insurance,” which refers to the health, unemployment and pension insurance guaranteed under Chinese law. After working a 12 hour shift workers are forced to go to a separate distribution center to perform additional labor. Noncompliance will result in suspension. Chinese law mandates that workers are to have the benefits of social insurance and forced overtime is strictly forbidden.

P and G is completely breaking the Chinese law!! Where is the accountability???

From Green America we read that Proctor and Gamble lobbied against China's Draft Labor Contract Law. This law would secure minimum wages, enforce contracts and severance pay and give the employee leverage power over workplace procedures and policies. It would not perfect the system, but greatly help it. P and G doesn't want it and just so you know, neither does Wal-mart (big surprise!), Nike, Google and GE. Well, that sucks. You all suck.
Here's a link to the full document:

Not to mention that when I looked up the court cases, they have been involved in 167 law suits in the last 5 years, over half of which are civil rights, labor rights and/or injury related.
This doesn't even include international law suits. I'm still looking for those.

And just as a tidbit of info, they were also caught spying on Unilever, spying on their plan for new shampoos. Sounds like a movie starring Cameron Diaz. So who can trust them?

Needless to say, my suspicions were right. God Almighty, this means I'm now buying $10 boxes of tampons and $12 bottles of shampoo. But it's worth it. I hate that they are getting away with this bs.