Reports

December, 01 2000 |  Share

Unmasking Starvation Wages - J.C. Penney's Arizona Jeans

December 2000

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  • Women in Nicaragua paid just 19 cents for each pair of jeans they sew;

  • Wages come to less than one percent of the retail price of the jeans.

Internal company production documents smuggled out of the Chentex factory in Nicaragua show that there are 39 steps, or sewing operations, required to complete a full-length, 5-pocket pair of Arizona blue jeans. The company assigns each operation a piece rate value which is broken down to the thousandth of a cent.

The total piece rate paid for all 39 operations comes to 2.3975 cordobas, or just 18 ½ cents, ($1.00 U.S. = 12.9 cordobas.)

Given that the J.C. Penney Arizona jeans retail for $19.99 in the U.S., the wages paid to the sewers in Nicaragua amounts to just 9/10ths of one percent of the retail price of the jeans.

documentation

 

jeans w/ tag