In late April, Ivanka Trump came under fire after it was reported that a Chinese factory where Ivanka Trump apparel is produced was facing labor violations for everything from overtime abuses to illegal wages.
Now, The Associated Press has a bombshell report that one man has been arrested and two others have been reported missing after investigating the working conditions at the Ganzhou Huajian International Shoe City Co.’s factory in southeast China that produces Ivanka Trump branded shoes.
The three men were planning to publish a report in collaboration with the China Labor Watch, a New York-based nonprofit, after documenting low pay and excessive overtime at this particular factory.
According The AP, one of the men, Hua Haifeng, was arrested and accused of illegal surveillance. The other two men, Li Zhao and Su Heng, having seemingly disappeared, according to China Labor Watch, who said they lost touch with the two men over the weekend.
The Democratic National Committee issued a statement to The AP calling for the Trump administration to “confront China on its human rights abuses,” in response.
“We deeply hope that these detained or missing human rights workers are safe and can be reunited with their families as soon as possible. For years, Ivanka Trump has ignored public reports of awful labor conditions at a factory that makes her shoes. Now, she must decide whether she can ignore the Chinese government’s apparent attempt to silence an investigation into those worker abuses.”
So how exactly does this connect to the First Daughter, and White House advisor, Ivanka Trump? At the very least it’s becoming abundantly clear that Trump’s company (in which it should be noted she has no management position, but she still has a financial stake) has not done its due diligence on where and who is producing its clothing and accessories (or did the due diligence and ultimately didn’t care) considering this is strike two for the brand.
This is also yet another instance in which the Trump family’s business interests appear to be a conflict of interest with U.S. interests. The Ivanka Trump-brand makes most of its merchandise in China, and has an extensive trademark portfolio in China (Trump’s husband Jared Kushner, and President Trump also have extensive ties to China). Can the U.S. maintain its leadership position in combatting human rights issues around the world when the First Family is directly profiting from them?
The White House and the Ivanka Trump-brand declined to comment to The AP.