Samsung personnel with be heading off to Huizhou, China tomorrow to investigate claims that one of its suppliers is employing underage workers. This investigation comes after the China Labor Watch said it found that seven workers under 16 years of age were working at HEG Electronics. Now Samsung is going to conduct an investigation of its own to make sure nothing shady is going on behind the scenes.
Samsung tells The Verge that it has conducted investigations of HEG on two earlier occasions this year and found nothing alarming while it was there. CLW claims that many more underage workers could be employed by HEG, as it wasn't allowed to fully investigate all of the company's departments. Now, Samsung is visiting HEG on August 9 to find out what, exactly, is going on and "take appropriate measures to correct any problems that may surface."
Of course, this isn't the first time we've heard about shady situations with Chinese suppliers. Companies like Apple and Microsoft have come under fire in the past for dealing with suppliers who are lax when it comes to working conditions and child labor. Needless to say, it doesn't paint a very good public picture when stuff like this gets out, so Samsung obviously wants to address the problems CLW discovered as quickly as possible.
Hopefully Samsung doesn't find anything bad while there, but it's very possible that HEG covered up any wrongdoing as best it could when Samsung visited earlier in the year. This time around, you can bet that Samsung will do its best to prevent anything from slipping by it, because reacting quickly is the best thing the company can do with CLW's report out in the open. Stay tuned, as we'll have more details about this investigation once they become available.