Rather than pay for maternity leave, a laundry list of woke U.S. corporations (who until recently flaunted Pride-themed logos) are cutting costs by offering chump change so their pregnant employees can travel across state lines to abort their babies. Just so the female laborer can get back to work on Monday and continue to slave away in the warehouse or clock in at her 6'x6' cubicle—all while the rich get richer. Hurray for women's empowerment?
Aside from the anti-family position, corporate America is painting the baby-killing procedure as "healthcare" and "a human right." But these same pro-abortion U.S. companies are known for often kowtowing to Beijing have or had booming business relations with allies of the Chinese Communist Party, which is notorious the world over for its human rights abuses, including (but not limited to) its enslavement of the Uyghur minority in Xinjiang's ethnic-cleansing camps who are forced to labor in factories that have compromised U.S. supply chains.
(By the way, if your pro-abortion agenda also happens to align with the efficiency-orientated and disregard-for-human-life values of the CCP's slave-labor programs—part of the Uyghur genocide, along with forced abortions and compulsory sterilizations—maybe you're not on the right side of history here. Progressive darling Ana Navarro also unabashedly engaged in the what-ifs of eugenics on The View, suggesting that aborting the inconvenient members of society would be expedient for those with the power to do so. +15 social credit.)
Here are the CCP shills, from A-Z, providing travel reimbursements for out-of-state employee abortions in the name of "fundamental human rights" while they've been implicitly endorsing the Uyghur genocide in China:
In response to the Texas Heartbeat Bill banning abortions as early as six weeks into pregnancy, Airbnb announced in September 2021 that it would also provide financial support to any Airbnb host who is implicated under the pro-life Texas law, thus facing legal action as a result. The company's U.S. health plans now cover abortion-related travel and temporary housing expenses, according to Law360, and its employee leave policy is updated to cover up to 20 days of paid bereavement for pregnancy loss, even if it was elective.
At the beginning of the year, U.S. senators sitting on the Congressional-Executive Commission on China requested information in January from Airbnb on its business practices in the Xinjiang region. The congressional inquiry cited an Axios report last November revealing that the American lodging company hosted rentals on land owned by the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps, a Chinese state-owned paramilitary entity sanctioned by the U.S. government under the Global Magnitsky Act for its complicity in the Uyghur genocide.
More than a dozen Airbnb listings had advertised houses available for rent that reside on XPCC-owned territory in Xinjiang, which has been transformed into a popular "Disneyfied" destination that erodes Uyghur culture where China is promoting tourist attractions and demolishing religious sites. The XPCC operates some of the mass internment facilities in Xinjiang where 1 million or more ethnic Uyghurs have been detained, subjected to torture, and forced to renounce their religious beliefs. The organization subordinate to the CCP is also involved in the production of about one-third of the region's cotton, an industry that utilizes Uyghur forced labor.
Before its exit from China this year, the firm's Chinese subsidiary was given the brand name "Aibiying," meaning "welcome each other with love," to reflect "Airbnb's mission of belonging and bringing people together," according to a 2017 press release. But the marketplace for homestays wasn't so welcoming to China's ethnic minorities. Airbnb abetted the Chinese government's restriction of the Uyghur people's freedom of movement. Numerous listings on the Chinese version of Airbnb openly discriminated against Uyghurs and Tibetans by barring them from renting rooms, Wired reported. And in 2018, Airbnb said it would comply with China's guest registration system, which requires hosts to register foreign guests with police upon check-in.
(That system is often cited by Chinese Airbnb hosts to explain the racially discriminatory clauses in the listings, arguing they're not permitted to host foreigners, even though Uyghurs are full-fledged Chinese citizens.)
Amazon, the second-largest U.S. private employer, told its staff in May that it will pay up to $4,000 in travel expenditures each year for non-life-threatening medical treatments including abortions, according to an internal message seen by Reuters. The benefit—open to U.S. employees or covered dependents, whether they're working in a corporate office or a warehouse—is retroactive to Jan. 1, 2022, and extends to any procedure that's not available within 100 miles of an employee's residence and when virtual care is not an option.
According to Amazon's supply chain standards, the e-commerce mammoth insists it "does not tolerate suppliers that traffic workers or in any other way exploit workers by means of threat, force, coercion, abduction, or fraud," but mounting evidence has shown it hasn't thoroughly vetted its supplier relationships abroad.
The popular American multinational technology company has been accused as recently as spring 2022 of using Chinese suppliers with links to forced Uyghur labor. An early March report by business ethics watchdog Tech Transparency Project, which investigates Big Tech's supply chains, alleges that Amazon used suppliers—as many as five entities on the Bezos-founded giant's June 2021 supplier list—with well-documented ties to coercive labor programs, known euphemistically as "labor transfers," which forcibly move laborers from the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region to factories in other parts of China, ergo fragmenting Uyghur society.
TTP also found evidence of third-party sellers on Amazon peddling products containing Xinjiang-processed cotton, a good that has been banned from U.S. imports under the Trump administration since fall 2020. Despite the U.S. ban on imported products made from Xinjiang cotton, Amazon product pages have touted using "100% China Xinjiang" cotton. Amazon also continued to include Esquel Group, a major textiles manufacturer with extensive operations in Xinjiang, on its supplier list for over a year after the U.S. Department of Commerce imposed July 2020 sanctions on a Hong Kong-based Esquel subsidiary for its involvement in forced labor.
Sources told Reuters news agency that Amazon entered a deal in 2020 valued at about $10 million to buy 1,500 thermal cameras from Dahua Technology Company, a Chinese business blacklisted by the U.S. that has developed an Orwellian system of surveillance using instant facial attribute recognition programs to identify and report the detection of Uyghur Muslims to Chinese authorities. The software features include "real-time Uyghur Warnings" that flag individuals with specified Uyghur facial traits to Chinese security forces immediately.
Reassuring employee benefits in response to the Texas six-week abortion bill, ultra-liberal Apple—which is expanding its presence in Austin with a new $1 billion, 3-million-square-foot campus there—stated rather matter-of-factly last September in an internal memo confirmed to TechCrunch that its health insurance policies will foot the bill for its staff's abortion services if they're not accessible at home and will cover the resulting travel fees.
Apple renewed its affirmation of company benefits covering out-of-state "reproductive care" following the historic fall of Roe. "For more than a decade, Apple's comprehensive benefits have allowed our employees to travel out-of-state for medical care if it is unavailable in their home state," an Apple spokesperson told CNBC.
Although the progressive stalwart was the 2018 recipient of the "Stop Slavery Award" by the Thomson Reuters Foundation for "leading the industry in eradicating forced labor," an investigation by The Information in May last year found that seven Apple suppliers utilized forced labor involving persecuted minorities from Xinjiang.
Specifically, the investigative report discovered that Luxshare, one of Apple's biggest Chinese suppliers, received "as many as hundreds" of Xinjiang workers between 2017 and 2020; Avary Holding, which makes circuit boards for Apple devices in Huai'an, added 400 Xinjiang labor workers to its workforce from 2019 and 2020 at one of its factories; Shenzhen Deren Electronic, which made antennas and internal cables for Apple, has taken in 1,000 labor workers from Xinjiang; and Lens Technology, a longtime provider of glass for Apple's iPhones, received 600 workers out of the northwest Chinese territory since 2018. One supplier even had a Xinjiang facility next to a suspected detention center surrounded by barbed wire and guard towers.
Earlier in January 2021, the TTP released a report unearthing further evidence that Lens Tech, a key supplier of touch screens for Apple products, had minority Uyghurs sent to work there by the same agency that supplied minority laborers to Nanchang O-Film Tech, another Apple supplier making parts for iPhone selfie cameras that was added to the U.S. entity list during the Trump presidency for its exploitative practice of forced labor.
(In December 2017, Apple's CEO Tim Cook visited O-Film and posted a picture captioned "Say cheese!" of himself touring its Guangzhou factory on the Chinese social media platform Weibo. Cook praised the company for its "humane approach towards employees" during his trip to O-Film, asserting that workers seemed "able to gain growth at the company, and live happily," according to a since-scrubbed press release cited by a February 2020 deep-dive report, entitled "Uyghurs for Sale," that was authored by the Australian Strategic Policy Initiative think tank, which received funding from the U.S. State Department to conduct research on Xinjiang.)
TTP identified another 2,200 laborers from the Kashgar area of Xinjiang who were sent to Lens Tech by the Xinjiang–Suzhou Chamber of Commerce, which has claimed credit for arranging the transfer of more than 4,000 "outstanding ethnic youth" and "minority masses possessing a certain level of quality" from prefectures in Xinjiang to companies in inner China. 1,800 of the workers from the Hotan Prefecture went to O-Film, and at the climax of the pandemic in late February 2020, the China Civil Aviation Network reported on hundreds of locals boarding chartered flights from Hotan and Kashgar to work in Lens Tech's factories and "fight the epidemic."
Lens Tech's 2007 partnership with Apple transformed the Chinese company into a tech powerhouse. Analysts began to worry that the Chinese touch-screen maker was over-reliant on Apple, a client that accounted for more than half its revenue. Booming demand for smartphones and the success of the Apple Watch drove Lens Tech's share price through the roof as the company’s founder became China's richest woman in 2015.
And in August 2020, the TTP reported that Esquel Group, which Apple has long sourced for the uniforms worn by its retail employees, has its farms, gins, and mills plugged into the prison camp-to-factory pipeline that bludgeons impoverished minorities into involuntary labor arrangements. The large-scale garment maker's Xinjiang subsidiary was slapped with U.S. sanctions at the same time O-Film was blacklisted.
Apple is also investing in Chinese wind farms as it seeks to achieve complete carbon neutrality by 2030, but new TTP research last June exposed another questionable Apple business partner in China: colossal wind turbine maker Xinjiang Goldwind Science & Technology Co. Apple's extensive partnership with the Xinjiang-operating Goldwind, which is China's top wind turbine manufacturer, includes four wind farm joint ventures.
Now-deleted local government media posts indicated that a Goldwind factory in Toksun County, Xinjiang, engaged in advanced talks to receive "labor export" from Hotan Prefecture, another area of Xinjiang with a Uyghur-majority population over 500 miles away, the TTP investigation highlighted. According to experts on the matter, “labor export" programs serve as a primary conduit of forced Uyghur labor in the region.
Among other red flags, Goldwind's founder and chairman Wu Gang, an ex-member of the National People’s Congress who maintains strong connections to the party-state as a current vice-chairperson of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, partook in an invasive Chinese government campaign, titled "fanghuiju," that promotes ideological "re-education" of Uyghurs in Xinjiang and arranges for CCP members to stay in the households of nearby Xinjiang families for political indoctrination purposes as well as ranking "trustworthiness," the TTP reported. Goldwind also has close working relations with XPCC and signed an agreement with the quasi-military outfit in December 2020, months after the announcement of U.S. sanctions.
In its 2022 proxy statement, Citigroup said that "in response to changes in reproductive healthcare laws in certain states," beginning this year, it would secure travel benefits "to facilitate access to adequate resources." Texas representative Briscoe Cain (R) threatened he would introduce a bill to prevent the bank from underwriting municipal loans in the GOP-led state unless Citigroup rescinded the abortion-reimbursement policy. Cain sent a cease-and-desist letter to Citigroup's chief executive Jane Fraser, calling the company's actions "a grotesque abuse of the fiduciary duty that you owe to the many shareholders of your company that oppose abortion."
Citigroup was one of three main banks working on Chinese AI firm Megvii Technology's initial public offering (IPO). Beijing-based Megvii, best known for its facial recognition algorithms, was seeking a valuation of up to $1 billion. But the listing in Hong Kong was dealt a setback in 2019 when city regulators questioned the company's suitability to seek an IPO after it was blacklisted by the U.S. government over suspicions of its involvement in Beijing's persecution of the predominantly Muslim minority in Xinjiang, sources told Reuters.
In December, the U.S. Department of Treasury identified Megvii as part of the Chinese military-industrial complex that "actively support[s] the biometric surveillance and tracking of ethnic and religious minorities in China." IPVM discovered that Megvii partnered with tech leviathan Huawei to test and validate AI software that could recognize Uyghur targets for police detection, according to a Huawei document marked "confidential, prohibited to spread without permission." The test report outlined "basic functions of Megvii's facial recognition system" that Huawei "verified," including "Uyghur alert," which the former "passed." According to a completed box, Megvii's program succeeded in being able to determine "ethnicity" as part of its "face attribute analysis."
The activist Walt Disney Company sent an internal memo post-Roe that assured employees, cast members, and the staff's families that they'll have "comprehensive access" to "affordable coverage" no matter where a worker lives via a travel benefit that pays for "family planning" including "pregnancy-related decisions."
Disney released its new "Mulan" movie, a live-action remake of the animated classic, in 2020, garnering intense criticism from human rights organizations for its partial filming in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region, in the vicinity of detention facilities for Uyghur Muslims. In the end credits, the American entertainment conglomerate gave "special thanks" to the "publicity department of CPC Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomy Region Committee," a state-propaganda mouthpiece, plus three other CCP propaganda bureaus in Xinjiang.
The producers of the flick even applauded the public security bureau in the city of Turpan, where the country is accused of carrying out the mass detainment of Uyghurs, which found its place on the U.S. entity list all the way back in 2019. At least 14 camps "designed to extrajudicially detain minorities" are run by the Turpan Municipal Bureau of Public Security, according to Australian Strategic Policy Institute researcher Nathan Ruser.
Medium journalist Shawn Zhang, who mapped out the myriad of concentration camps in Xinjiang, wrote that if the "Mulan" film crew landed at the Turpan airport and traveled along highway G312 to the Shanshan Desert, where scenes for the film were shot, the production team "could see at least 7 re-education camps."
After human rights advocates called for a global boycott of the fantasy drama streaming on Disney+ and urged cinemas not to screen it, Disney's president of film production Sean Bailey responded in an unapologetic letter noting that "in order to accurately depict the unique geography and landscape of China for this period drama," the producers chose to film some scenery in Xinjiang province's Kumtag Desert for "authenticity" reasons. Bailey insisted that the decision was "in no way dictated or influenced by state or local Chinese officials.
"There are regulations that must be followed by all foreign film production companies wanting to operate in China," the Disney exec explained, adding that these companies are "not allowed to operate independently" and "must partner with a Chinese production company which is responsible for securing all film permits."
Asserting that it's "standard practice across the film industry" to acknowledge the "cooperation, approvals and assistance" provided during a work's undertaking, Bailey contended that Beijing Shadow Times Culture Co. provided the Disney crew with the list of accomplishments to be included and that Disney "has no separate, independent or ongoing relationship with government authorities in the Xinjiang autonomous province."
Some have claimed the reboot is rooted in Han supremacism, or "Han chauvinism" as communist revolutionary Mao Zedong termed it, which is the notion that all parts of China, including native Uighur and Kazakh lands, should be dominated by the ethnic majority Han Chinese. (China is currently ruled by President Xi Jinping of Han nationality.) Anthropologists studying the Chinese government's oppression of Uyghurs believe the film's villain leads a gang of assassins coded as turban-wearing, dark-skinned Muslim characters. The protagonist is portrayed as "a defender of the Chinese colonization of northwest China," an expert told Vox.
Speaking of the beloved Disney princess, the actress playing Mulan expressed support for the police crackdown on the pro-democracy Hong Kong demonstrators. Chinese-born lead Liu Yifei, an American citizen, wrote during the period of civil unrest, "I support the Hong Kong police. You can all attack me now. What a shame for Hong Kong," in 2019, sharing a post from the CCP's newspaper of record People's Daily on Chinese social media site Weibo. Liu's open endorsement first spurred the fury of the #BoycottMulan movement on social media.
Goldman Sachs heartened employees in a June 24 memo stating that it has extended its healthcare travel reimbursement policies, effective July 1, to "include all medical procedures, treatments and evaluations, including abortion services and gender-affirming care" where a provider is not in close proximity to the client. The New York City-headquartered financial services company's CEO David Solomon also issued an internal statement to his staff on the SCOTUS ruling: "I know many of you are deeply upset, and I stand with you."
A mid-January investigation by New Lines Magazine unmasked a Soros-esque network of Big Business-aligned charities funneling millions into left-wing platforms that take Beijing's side on Uyghur genocide denial. Among the various entities connected to CCP sympathizers who've defended the Chinese government and downplayed or outright denied documented human rights violations committed by Beijing against minority Muslims, Goldman Sachs has been named as a Wall Street vehicle used to funnel big bucks through.
One particular organization, Tricontinental, which bills itself as an "institute for social research," has a majority of its donor money with unknown origin status since funds from anonymous contributors are disbursed as pass-through donations via Goldman Sachs. According to tax filings, Tricontinental received $12.5 million from Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund, a donor-advised charity that conceals its shadowy funders from the public record, "making it a convenient clearinghouse for moving dark money," New Lines penned.
Tricontinental's founder Vijay Prashad serves as a senior fellow at the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, a think tank affiliated with Beijing's Renmin University, which is financed by China's Ministry of Education and the Beijing municipal government. Prashad co-authored an April 2021 article with a pro-CCP slant that depicted the Western diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing as part of an American disinformation campaign to intensify hostilities with China. "The U.S. government's information warfare against China has produced the 'fact’ that there is genocide in Xinjiang," the article's abstract reads.
The People's Forum took in $12 million as well from the Goldman Sachs fund in 2019. Last year, The People's Forum hosted "A Socialist Forum" on "China and the Left" that was co-sponsored by Code Pink and keynoted by both Prashad as well as the Qiao Collective, a self-described Marxist group of ethnic Chinese members whose Twitter account often promotes the CCP's narrative on the Uyghur genocide. Meanwhile, Code Pink initiated a "China In Not Our Enemy" campaign in 2020, pressuring the U.S. to adopt a conciliatory approach toward China. Code Pink's website contains a "China FAQ" section on the Uyghur population. "Our concern is that it is being used as a tool to drive the U.S.’s hybrid war on China," the page states, "instead of a human rights issue that needs to be addressed as such." Code Pink then provides links to "helpful resources" on the topic, one of which is a YouTube video on a discussion with Code Pink co-founder Jodie Evans that appears to treat the plight of the Uyghurs as a human rights non-issue and characterizes the genocide as "farcical" and "a big lie."
In 2019, Goldman Sachs said it was reviewing its involvement in Megvii Technology Ltd's planned initial public offering after the U.S. placed the Chinese artificial intelligence firm on a human rights blacklist. During former President Donald Trump's tenure, Megvii was hit with U.S. sanctions for its implication in China's crimes against humanity targeting Muslim minority populations. In a statement to Reuters commenting on the Megvii IPO, Goldman disclosed it was "evaluating in light of the recent developments." Sources told Reuters the listing was scheduled for Hong Kong in the fourth quarter and set to raise as much as $1 billion. Goldman was a joint sponsor of the Megvii IPO, alongside Citigroup Inc C.N and JPMorgan Chase & Co JPM.N.
On the first day of June, the nation's largest bank by assets sent a memo rolling out the expansion of its health care travel benefits to include "all covered health care services that can only be obtained far from your home," which JPMorgan Chase defines as 50 miles or farther. A company spokesperson confirmed to Forbes when the Dobbs decision sent nationwide ripples last month that abortion is a covered service in its health care plan.
JPMorgan also worked on Megvii's updated listing, which was back on track after the Chinese mainland company's application was cleared by the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, according to CCP-owned China Daily.
Megvii's face-recognition platform Face++ is already powering face-scanning ID applications that Chinese professionals encounter in daily life, such as when they're boarding a train or entering an office, MIT Technology Review showcased. Huawei's seal of approval on Megvii's technological capability to trigger a "Uyghur alarm" has escalated fears of AI-aided systematic discrimination hunting down unfavorable members of society and quelling public dissent, as illustrated in dystopian social-control fiction, that's found footing in the real world.
Levi Strauss & Co.
Levi Strauss & Co. said before Roe was struck down in a May 4 statement that under its current benefits plan, full-time employees are eligible for reimbursement of healthcare-related travel expenses regarding services not available in their home state, including abortion. Hourly workers who are part-time staffers and not covered by employee insurance also "can seek reimbursement for travel costs incurred under the same circumstances."
The company claimed that there's "a business imperative" that compels corporate leaders to be "responsible" for "protecting reproductive rights and abortion access." Such "[a]ccess to reproductive health care, including abortion, has been a critical factor to the workplace gains and contributions women have made over the past 50 years. Further restricting or criminalizing access will jeopardize that progress and disproportionately affect women of color, putting their well-being at risk and impeding diverse hiring pipelines," Levi's alleged.
Levi's reiterated its commitment after the landmark Supreme Court ruling, claiming once more that it's "a critical business issue" that impacts the workforce, the economy, and "progress toward gender and racial equity."
In March of last year, the storied American denim maker received a letter from the Working Group on Business and Human Rights, part of the special procedures system of the United Nations and mandated by the Human Rights Council, regarding intel that Levi's "may be involved through its supply chain in alleged forced labour, arbitrary detention, and trafficking in persons of Uyghur and other minority workers within and outside the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (Xinjiang)." The communication was flagged under the mandates: "cultural rights," "slavery," and "torture." Over a year later, Levi's never responded, as requested, to the inquiry.
Distancing itself from controversy, Levi's left the board of a fashion coalition that faced the wrath of CCP-affiliated media, sources told The Wall Street Journal last August. Levi's, a founding member, departed the Better Cotton Initiative's leadership, which includes the West's most prominent household names, after the non-profit raised concerns about forced labor in cotton-rich Xinjiang, prompting a coordinated attack by the CCP and pro-Beijing defenders that called for consumer backlash across China. Several board members reversed course and BCI deleted a statement on its website that voiced apprehension about the CCP's human rights abuses. Following the scandal, Levi's chief sustainability officer Jeffrey Hogue planned to vacate his BCI board seat imminently, instead of finishing the final months of a four-year term scheduled to end the following year, per The WSJ. BCI quickly unlisted Levi's title as a sitting board member. Levi's general BCI membership remains unchanged.
Levi's historian Tracey Panek told The WSJ that the company has been in high demand of suppliers who could meet its production standards. "We went back when China was a low-cost provider," Levi's executive vice president David Love said of the company returning after a partial retrench. "We wanted to capitalize on that."
Microsoft confirmed on May 9 that it is extending its travel expense assistance to staffers in the U.S. seeking abortions and “gender-affirming care" where access is limited in an employee's home geographic region.
A February 2022 report by the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation found that Microsoft has a troubling entanglement with China's police state. Microsoft received an automatic failing "F" grade on its "Corporate Complicity Scorecard" for what the detailed report claims is "Direct Support to Military or State Security."
Haiyi Software, which provides surveillance products such as a "social face and vehicle verification platform" to public-security bureaus across China—lists Microsoft as a partner on its website, the report mentioned. So does Beijing Zhongke Fuxing Information Technology, which lists several detention centers, including in Xinjiang, among its "success cases." Microsoft announced in 2018 a strategic partnership with Dajiang Innovations (DJI) to "bring advanced AI and machine learning capabilities to DJI drones." The company's press release gleamed over how DJI chose Microsoft Azure as "its preferred cloud-computing partner." Last summer, the U.S. Department of Defense warned that systems produced by DJI "pose potential threats to national security."
Microsoft also entered into partnerships with the heavily U.S.-sanctioned Huawei, even after a House Intelligence Committee report in 2012 said it received information suggesting that the scrutinized Chinese tech corporation "may be violating United States laws" and has "not followed United States legal obligations or international standards of business behavior." Microsoft has a license from the U.S. Commerce Department to provide its Windows and Office products to Huawei, a company spokesperson told The Wall Street Journal.
In 2018, Microsoft faced scrutiny after its academics produced research on AI and facial analysis with a Chinese military-run university, which CCP hawks cautioned could be used in Beijing's suppression of Uyghurs. Microsoft Research Asia, the U.S. company's Beijing-based research arm, and researchers associated with China's National University of Defense Technology, which is controlled by China's top military body, co-wrote three papers, The Financial Times reported. Microsoft defended the partnership, arguing that its research projects "advance our understanding of technology," a company spokesperson told Business Insider in a statement.
There was online speculation over whether Microsoft partnered with Chinese crowd-analysis tech firm SenseNets, which has been working with China's police force, after a hacker shined a light on the facial-recognition technology being used to track Xinjiang's Muslims in real-time. The data breach appeared to show the use of Microsoft technology, GitHub and Azure, within the SenseNets program. SenseNets had openly listed Microsoft as a partner on its website, but the latter denied to Forbes there being "any evidence of Microsoft having a partnership with SenseNets" and a Microsoft spokesperson told CNBC they've "been made aware SenseNets is using our logo on its website without our permission, and we have asked for it to be removed."
At this moment it is not clear if the @Microsoft @Azure Cognitive services are still being used. The developers of SenseNets did not learn much from the previous incident and keep pushing new code and credentials to @Github for their new "Face device management system". ?????????? pic.twitter.com/C94gcGhcTI— Victor Gevers (@0xDUDE) March 7, 2019
U.S. remote-control maker Universal Electronics Inc. told Reuters last year it struck a deal with authorities in Xinjiang to transport hundreds of Uyghur workers to its plant in the southern Chinese city of Qinzhou, which is considered the first confirmed instance of an American company participating in a forced-labor transfer program. UAE, which has sold its equipment to Microsoft, employed at least 400 Uyghur workers from Xinjiang as part of a worker-transfer agreement, Reuters reported. In one instance, officials told Reuters that Xinjiang authorities paid for a charter flight that delivered the Uyghur workers under police escort from Xinjiang's southwestern Hotan city to the UEI plant, where the Uyghur laborers sleep in separate quarters and eat in a segregated canteen under the watch of guards assigned by Xinjiang authorities. "We have not used hardware from the supplier since 2016 and have had no association with the factory in question," a Microsoft spokesperson insisted to Reuters.
Netflix has also added travel reimbursement coverage this summer to their U.S. health plan for full-time employees and their covered dependents who are seeking abortions and "gender-affirming care." The expanded benefit is limited to a $10,000 lifetime allowance per service for each U.S. worker and their family.
The American subscription-based streaming service drew condemnation from several U.S. senators and activists who urged Netflix to reconsider its plans to adapt a Chinese science-fiction trilogy, "The Three-Body Problem," from book format to a live-action, English-language TV series on the platform after the written work's creator has been accused of being a Uyghur genocide apologist. "It is completely unacceptable for someone to support the 21st century’s modern genocide. It is even more shocking that a supporter of this genocide is being rewarded with a film deal," the Nobel Peace Prize-nominated Campaign for Uyghurs spoke out in a press statement.
I don't want to reduce both the profile to just this one quote and I do recommend you read it in context. There are complexities at work, but I don't want to lose sight of the big picture: genocide (something that is thematically consistent with LXC's work) pic.twitter.com/NUywTaxulH— Jeannette Ng ??? (@jeannette_ng) September 3, 2020
Defending its decision to greenlight the adaptation, Netflix stated that it does not agree with Chinese author Liu Cixin's public views on the CCP's treatment of Uyghur Muslims. "If anything, the government is helping their economy and trying to lift them out of poverty," Liu told The New Yorker magazine in a 2019 interview, parroting CCP talking points. "If you were to loosen up the country a bit, the consequences would be terrifying." (Liu serves as a consulting producer on the project that's underway.) "Mr. Liu is the author of the book not the creator of this show. We do not agree with his comments, which are entirely unrelated to his book or this Netflix show,” Netflix's vice president of global public policy Dean Garfield responded in a letter to the U.S. senators.
Hours after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, Nike announced it will ensure employees have access to abortion regardless of where they're living by covering travel and lodging expenses when services aren't readily available. "No matter where our teammates are on their family planning journey—from contraception and abortion coverage...we are here to support their decisions," Nike wrote in a statement that fateful Friday.
Nike on Roe v. Wade decision: pic.twitter.com/HoxhuEQYaS— Jess Golden (@JGolden5) June 24, 2022
A congressional staff-research report in March 2020 identified Nike as a U.S. consumer goods company suspected of "directly employing forced labor" or sourcing from suppliers that are reliant on forced labor.
Earlier that year, the damning report from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute revealed that the Chinese government was forcing hundreds of young Uyghur women to produce Nike shoes at the Qingdao Taekwang Shoes Co. factory in Laixi City, which is one of the American apparel-maker's largest suppliers that produces millions of Nike footwear units per year, including signature lines such as Air Max and Shox.
The minority Muslim laborers are not allowed to return home for the holidays, The Washington Post reported, and they've been sent there by the Xinjiang government and did not choose to come. They're unable to practice their religion freely, according to the WaPo report, they're ordered to live in separate quarters from those of Han workers, and they're instructed to eat in a separate canteen or a Muslim restaurant across the road from the factory, where the "halal" signs and other Arabic messages have been taped over, per authorities. Photographs of the factory taken in January 2020 and published by the newspaper show that the complex was equipped with watchtowers, razor wire, and inward-facing barbed-wire fences. A police station is located at the side gate equipped with facial recognition cameras for close monitoring of comings and goings.
After the release of the ASPI report, Nike claimed in a statement that when news broke of "the situation in XUAR" a year before, "Taekwang stopped hiring new employees from the XUAR to its Qingdao facility and an independent third-party audit confirmed there are no longer any employees from XUAR at the facility."
Nike joined Coca-Cola in lobbying against a Xinjiang forced-labor bill, pressing Congress to weaken the tough-on-CCP legislation that would ban imported goods made by persecuted Muslim minorities. According to corporate lobbyists who fought to water down some provisions, the act could wreak havoc on U.S. companies that have found a lucrative foothold in China and whose supply chains touch the Xinjiang region. Nike's director of global communications Greg Rossiter told The New York Times the company "did not lobby against" the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act but instead held "constructive discussions" with congressional staff aides.
Patagonia pays for all abortion-related travel, lodging, and food costs that both part-time and full-time U.S. employees incur. As part of a long-standing benefit, Patagonia also posts bail for staffers who are arrested while "peacefully protest[ing] for reproductive justice," the company wrote in a LinkedIn post on June 24. Patagonia spokesperson J.J. Huggins told Axios that the outdoor-gear company has "had the bail policy in place for many years" and will cover bail for any employee "who has previously taken a nonviolent civil disobedience class."
Patagonia has long supported abortion care, working parents, and families, and we’ll continue to do so. https://t.co/CDQM2IwjMq— Patagonia (@patagonia) June 24, 2022
A European human rights organization filed a criminal complaint last year against Patagonia, Nike, and other Western fashion brands who have European headquarters in the Netherlands, claiming they're "directly or indirectly" complicit in the forced labor of Uyghurs and that the alleged human rights violations could amount to "crimes against humanity." As part of a series of criminal complaints, the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights asked the Dutch public prosecutor to investigate Patagonia's suspected complicity.
Like Nike, in 2020, Patagonia issued a statement on Xinjiang, stating that it has "done the painstaking and important work of mapping the source of our products to the farm level," adding that "supply chain changes take time." Patagonia vowed, "We don't source any finished goods in Xinjiang, and we are committed to only sourcing from farms and mills where we can confirm there are no human rights abuses. We hope to have continuity with our longtime manufacturing partners, as we know they also feel strongly about human rights and environmental sustainability, but we are prepared to make changes if we can't confirm that our values are being upheld."
"We live in a complicated world: one where incredible progress and creative genius exist side by side with inexplicable pain and frustrating inaction on everything from the heating of our planet to the work that we should all be doing together to respect the dignity of our fellow human beings," Patagonia's statement went on.
In an updated written response in July of that year, Patagonia's vice president of social and environmental responsibility Cara Chacon said the athletic apparel retailer is "actively exiting the Xinjiang region" and they've communicated to Patagonia's global suppliers that fiber as well as manufacturing in Xinjiang are prohibited.
Buried within Tesla's new 2021 Impact Report released on May 6 is a reference to an expanded "Safety Net" program and health insurance coverage that includes "travel and lodging support for those who may need to seek healthcare services in their home state." Though there's no mention of the word "abortion," the wording of the policy seems to imply the inclusion of such a procedure. The New York Times ran with the presumption, reporting that Tesla, which moved to Texas, will cover such transportation costs for employee abortions.
The trailblazing U.S. electric car manufacturer was lambasted by activists and legislators for opening a showroom in the city of Urumqi, the capital of the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. Tesla announced the Xinjiang dealership's grand opening on New Year's Eve in a Weibo post: "Let's start Xinjiang's all-electric journey!" In a joint letter addressed to Tesla chief Elon Musk, two U.S. lawmakers serving as chairmen on oversight and trade subcommittees, while questioning the company's Chinese product sourcing, said Tesla's "misguided" Xinjiang expansion "sets a poor example" and "further empowers the CCP at a fraught moment."
"No American corporation should be doing business in a region that is the focal point of a campaign of genocide targeting a religious and ethnic minority," the Council on American-Islamic Relations national communications director Ibrahim Hooper reacted in a statement. "Elon Musk and Tesla must close this new showroom and cease what amounts to economic support for genocide." CAIR again urged Musk to shut down the Xinjiang location where the Muslim advocacy organization said Tesla is "supporting genocide" by doing business in the province.
By doing business in China’s Xinjiang Province, where millions of #Uyghur Muslims are being held in concentration camps and forced labor facilities, Tesla is supporting genocide. Elon Musk must close Tesla’s Xinjiang showroom.https://t.co/MGF6YGYgFC— CAIR National (@CAIRNational) January 4, 2022