Ikea 'Regrets' Using Forced Prison Labour
Ikea says it "deeply regrets" the use of forced prison labour by suppliers in communist East Germany more than two decades ago.
The Swedish furniture giant apologised after commissioning a report into claims political prisoners worked in factories making its products in the 1960s and 70s.
The company says it never condoned the use of forced labour but the report showed it failed to properly vet how its suppliers were operating.
The report concludes that Ikea managers "were aware of the possibility that political prisoners would be used in the production of Ikea products in the former GDR".
"We deeply regret that this could happen," said Jeanette Skjelmose, an Ikea manager.
"The use of political prisoners for manufacturing was at no point accepted by Ikea."
But she added: "At the time we didn't have the well-developed control system that we have today and we clearly did too little to prevent such production methods."
Ikea commissioned accountants Ernst & Young to look into claims aired by a Swedish TV documentary in June but first raised by a human rights group in 1982.
Rainer Wagner, chairman of the victims' group UOKG, said Ikea was just one of many companies that used forced prison labour in East Germany.
"Ikea is only the tip of the iceberg," he told The Associated Press in an interview earlier this week.
Wagner said he hoped that Ikea and others would consider compensating former prisoners, many of whom carry psychological and physical scars.
"Ikea has taken the lead on this, for which we are very grateful," he told a news conference in Berlin, where the report was presented.
Peter Betzel, the head of Ikea Germany, said the company would continue to support efforts to investigate the use of prisoners in East Germany in future.
what do you think?
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Thats alright then.
oooooooooooo that terrible try that with brittish prisoners.they would sue for millions.nothing wrong with doing this..
Nothing wrong with it, apart from the fact they were political prisoners. Hadn't actually done anything wrong. And I don't think prisoners should be forced to work. That takes jobs away from people who really need and deserve them.
I do not think prisoners should be forced to work either They should be asked to work and if they choose not to ostop their food and privalidges
Power companies do it all the time. Forcing us slaves to pay their inflated prices. Then tell us we get a good service. When I switch the light on, it comes on right away. How can they improve on that. Only by ripping us off. Absolute crooks.
forcing prisoner to work, building roads,and other things,is a very normal thing in America! and nobody gets any compensation afterwards.we us to use black people,to serve us,did they get compensated?
I thin the regret is in being found out!
compensation ? for learning a trade, don't be ridiculous !
Yes we called all the rxxxxts .murderers fraudsters and drug dealers in SOVIET east Germany political prisoners .Now they are free and over here as E..U members rxxxg murdering benefit fraud and drug dealing. Funny old World:)))
Better than Chinese, Indian& Pakistan child LABOUR. Company's know about this but still it goes on