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21 Dec 2020

Malaysia: Hundreds of migrant workers subject to "squalid" onsite living conditions at glove manufacturers owned by Brightway Holdings; Incl. buyer responses

On 21 December 2020, the Human Resources Ministry of Malaysia conducted a raid on the premises of La Glove factory, a subsidiary of Brightway Holdings Sdn Bhd. The Ministry found La Glove to have flouted the Workers’ Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities Act 1990 (Act 446), as workers were found living in shipping containers in cramped and "squalid" conditions described as amounting to modern slavery by the Human Resources Minister. According to reports, 781 workers are employed at LA Glove, the majority of whom are migrants. A separate raid on Biopro Sdn Bhd - another Brightway Holdings subsidiary - also found workers residing in poor conditions, in two warehouses allegedly filled with garbage and factory waste.

The Labour Department says it will open 30 investigation papers over Brightway Holdings’ failure to comply with various housing standards. Brightway Holdings has denied the allegations.

American personal care company Kimberly-Clark and Australian safety and personal protection firm Ansell are named publicly as major buyers from Brightway Holdings. Ansell supplies the UK’s National Health Service.

In January 2021, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Ansell and Kimberly-Clark to respond. Both companies responded and the full responses are included below.

Company Responses

Kimberly-Clark View Response
Ansell View Response