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Sweatshops in Indonesia: Kade's Story



Sweatshops in Indonesia: Kade's Story
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 7 to 8
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.57

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    non-hazardous, overabundance, unionize, outwardly, abusive, overtime, unpaid, dingy, ventilation, reality, unlikely, sweatshop, profit, bosses, pledge, fines
     content words:    United States


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Sweatshops in Indonesia: Kade's Story
By Jennifer Kenny
  

1     Kade lives in Indonesia. She works in a shoe factory with many other workers, mostly women. She works very long hours and receives very little pay. Even though she works quite hard, she lives in poverty.
 
2     In the shoe factory, shoes, mainly sneakers, are manufactured for companies in the United States. Why are these products made so far away? For many companies in the United States, sending their operations overseas lowers their costs and actually increases their profits. Why would the system work this way? In many other countries, especially developing third world countries, employees can be paid a lot less money.
 
3     Kade is grateful for her job. However, the conditions under which she works are quite difficult, if not dangerous. The building is hot and dingy. Her bosses are mean and yell a lot, almost to the point of being abusive. She is often forced to work overtime but clock out hours ahead of that, therefore being left unpaid for the extra time. This can be exhausting. In fact, friends of hers have actually fainted on the job. Kade would never think to complain; she would lose her job if she did.

Paragraphs 4 to 10:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable


Extended Activities:

1.  Create a poster for a college campus protesting sweatshops.

2.  Research factory life during the Industrial Revolution in the United States.

3.  What places in the world have minimum wages for workers? Find out.



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