USC Students Host Naked Rally
The Student Coalition Against Labor Exploitation (SCALE) hosted a naked rally Thursday at USC in protest of the university using sweatshop labor in the manufacturing of school apparel.
According to the event's Facebook page, USC recently signed a ten year licensing deal with the clothing manufacturer Silver Star Merchandising, which protesters say the Dallas Cowboys also use.
Protesters also say that the manufacturer is a known sweatshop abuser.
To back their claim, protesters have cited an ESPN report which showed employees for SSM in Cambodia who were forced to work more than 60 hours per week under abusive managers and for wages averaging at about $0.29 per hour.
Students from SCALE said that by using SSM as a clothing manufacturer, USC is not following its code of conduct regarding clothing production which protesters said ensures all USC clothing is "manufactured in safe work environments that respect workers’ rights.”
Protesters have planned to ask USC President C.L. Max Nikias to support the Worker's Rights Consortium, an anti-sweatshop monitoring organization.
They say 181 schools around the country have already signed onto the WRC in the fight against sweatshops, including the UC and Cal State schools, ASU, Stanford, SDSU, SFSU, the University of Arizona, University of Washington, Notre Dame, Harvard and Princeton.
Organizers of the naked rally on Thursday said the message they hope to convey is that the student body will not condone human rights violations.