Olympics

Adidas investigating 'sweatshop' claims

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Allegations that Olympics uniforms are being manufactured in "sweatshop" conditions overseas are being investigated by Adidas, with London Games organizers saying they were taking the claims "extremely seriously."

The Independent newspaper alleged that Olympic merchandise that will be worn by British athletes and volunteers at the 2012 Games "is being manufactured for Adidas in sweatshop conditions in Indonesia."

Workers at nine Indonesian factories that have contracts to produce Olympic shoes and clothing for Adidas are allegedly working up to 65-hour weeks and earning as little as 34 pence ($1.00) an hour, the paper said.

Of the claim that four suppliers in Indonesia pay below minimum wages, Adidas said only one supplier did so, adding that reports of excessive overtime were "an exception" and had to be voluntary, Sky News reported.

A spokeswoman for the London organizing committee said, "We place a high priority on environmental, social and ethical issues when securing goods and services and take these allegations extremely seriously.

"We have spoken to Adidas and they have assured us that they are investigating these allegations, the conclusions of which will be made public."

The Commission for a Sustainable London 2012, which oversees ethical practices relating to the Games, said it was "deeply concerned" about the report.

"The (organizers' priority) must be to investigate these issues and act accordingly to protect workers' rights and improve working conditions," chairman Shaun McCarthy said.

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