Consider this story. Levi Strauss got called out for one of the worst PR nightmares possible: two of their factories in Bangladesh were filled with child-labourers. They had not done full diligence in checking their contacting sources.
They were caught in an impossible dilemma.
Continuing to use the child-labourers would be unconscionable.
But “firing” them all would send them into equally horrific lives of prostitution and poverty, likely pulling down their families with them.
Levi Strauss did the entirely unexpected.
They continued paying the children their wages … but sent them to school instead. The children had their positions held for them, if they still wanted them, upon graduation.
Not many people know this story. It deserves telling. At a time when so many corporations do things that are horribly wrong, sometimes, a corporation steps up and responds courageously in a way that rights the wrongs.
I don’t know about you, but Levi’s is now my brand of choice. And the beauty is, I honestly don’t think they made their decision based on this potential outcome. If they did, more of us would know the story.
Photo Credit: achi
Readers: do you know of any other stories of corporations doing The Right Thing? (god, I hope so.)