Rep. Vargas Introduces the Stop Blood Tomatoes Act of 2015
WASHINGTON, DC (May 18, 2015) – Rep. Juan Vargas (CA-51) has introduced the Stop Blood Tomatoes Act of 2015 (H.R. 2385) in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would require corporations with revenues over $1 billion dollars to undergo annual independent audits of their supply chains to verify that they are not selling products manufactured by child or forced labor. According to the bill’s provisions, the results of these reviews would be prominently displayed on the companies’ websites stating that their products “May have been produced using child/forced labor” or “Products are free of child labor and forced labor’’. The results would also be reported to the Securities Exchange Commission and the Department of Labor.
“The United States prides itself on its global leadership in the promotion of human rights and fair labor conditions,” said Rep. Vargas. “In this role, we must make it clear that we will not tolerate corporations secretly profiting from forced and child labor.”
The use of child and forced labor violates both U.S. and international law. Even with these prohibitions, however, companies still sell products that are made with child and forced labor. This highlights the lack of transparency in the supply chains of large corporations, which often claim to have fair and equal trade practices. Tragically, the exploitation of child and forced labor is still prevalent in many parts of the world. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 168 million child laborers and 21 million forced laborers are utilized each year worldwide.
“The American people have the right to know if the products they buy are made by children or people coerced into labor,” continued Vargas. “My bill will ensure corporate transparency and expose the companies that choose to sell products created at the expense of toiling children and slaves.”