Effective Oct. 21, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at all U.S. ports of entry will detain disposable gloves produced by Supermax Corporation Bhd.’s wholly-owned subsidiaries, Maxter Glove Manufacturing Sdn. Bhd., Maxwell Glove Manufacturing Bhd., and Supermax Glove Manufacturing.
CBP issued a Withhold Release Order (WRO) against Supermax Corporation Bhd and its subsidiaries based on information that reasonably indicates their use of forced labor in manufacturing operations. CBP identified 10 of the International Labour Organization’s indicators of forced labor during its investigation.
Federal statute 19 U.S.C. 1307 prohibits the importation of merchandise produced, wholly or in part, by convict labor, forced labor, and/or indentured labor, including forced or indentured child labor. CBP detains shipments of goods suspected of being imported in violation of this statute. Importers of detained shipments have the opportunity to export their shipments or demonstrate that the merchandise was not produced with forced labor.
“This Withhold Release Order will help protect vulnerable workers,” said Troy Miller, CBP Acting Commissioner. “CBP is a global leader in forced labor enforcement, and we will continue to exclude products made by modern slavery from entering into the United States.”
“With 10 of the 11 forced labor indicators identified during the course of our investigation, CBP has sufficient evidence to conclude that Supermax Corporation Bhd. and its subsidiaries produce gloves in violation of U.S. trade law,” said CBP Office of Trade Executive Assistant Commissioner AnnMarie R. Highsmith. “Until the manufacturers can prove their manufacturing processes are free of forced labor, their goods are not welcome here.”
In Fiscal Year 2021, CBP issued seven WROs and two forced labor findings. The International Labor Organization estimates that 25 million workers suffer under conditions of forced labor worldwide. Foreign companies exploit forced labor to sell goods below market value. This exposes vulnerable populations to inhumane working conditions like physical and sexual violence, isolation, restriction of movement, withholding of wages, excessive overtime, and more. It also hurts law-abiding businesses, threatens American jobs, and exposes consumers to unwittingly supporting unethical business practices.
Any person or organization that has reason to believe merchandise produced with the use of forced labor is being, or likely to be, imported into the United States can report detailed allegations by contacting CBP through the e-Allegations Online Trade Violations Reporting System or by calling 1-800-BE-ALERT.