Nintendo slammed over 'blood chemicals' - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Nintendo slammed over 'blood chemicals'

Posted: Updated:

A letter signed by half a million people from 64 different countries was delivered to Nintendo offices Wednesday demanding that the company get the “blood” off its products.

Called “conflict minerals” or “blood minerals,” elements such as gold and the ores that make tungsten and tin are mined -- often at gunpoint -- by men, women and children in Congolese mines and used by most major electronics companies. Nintendo is one of the worst offenders, said Debrah Rosen, movement director at WalkFree.org.

Summary

“Blood diamonds” are the well-publicized face of the decades-long human rights challenge in Africa. 

But a lesser-known group of natural resources known as “blood minerals” has fueled civil wars in Congo and Uganda and gone largely unheard in the U.S. -- even though you’re probably holding them in the palm of your hand. Read more

“There are minerals in gaming consoles, cell phones, computers, anything that has a microchip in it that come from the Democratic Republic of the Congo,” Rosen told FoxNews.com. “Those minerals, and control of the mines where those minerals are extracted, is what’s fueling the conflict in the Congo.”

“Children have died in these mines,” she told FoxNews.com.

“You have soldiers who are part of the group running the mine that are enslaving and raping women. The mines are very central to solving the slavery problem in the Congo,” she said.

A Nintendo spokesman told FoxNews.com the company takes the issue of conflict minerals seriously. Nintendo released the following statement in response to the WalkFree.org protest: 

"We at Nintendo take our social responsibilities as a global company very seriously and expect our production partners to do the same. Nintendo bans the use of conflict minerals and we continue to work with our suppliers to ensure our ban is upheld."

Thanks to the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which includes a conflict minerals provision, many companies have been forced into action on the issue. But despite strides made in recent years to audit the companies supplying those minerals, WalkFree.org remains convinced that Nintendo’s response has lagged behind.

“Intel is looking at conflict-free devices by end of year. HP Apple, Nokia, and many others have policies to source from conflict-free smelters. Many companies publish the number of smelters they use.”

'The mines are very central to solving the slavery problem in the Congo.'

- Debrah Rosen, movement director at WalkFree.org

“Nintendo does zero of that.”

When the Enough Project released a report last August placing Nintendo dead last in its corporate rankings on the issue. Nintendo told FoxNews.com that has been striving to make progress on the issue. 

"Our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Procurement Guidelines prohibit our production partners from using conflict minerals from the Democratic Republic of Congo and adjoining countries. Each of our lead production partners has a policy banning the use of conflict minerals," the company said in a statement. 

"We ask our suppliers to disclose both their policy on conflict minerals and procedures used to trace materials in their supply chain."

That’s not going far enough, Rosen told FoxNews.com.

“What are the verification procedures for non-compliance? And why have they not joined the widely agreed conflict-free smelter program?” she said.

“When you ask those questions, that’s when they go silent,” she said.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2013/06/26/nintendo-slammed-over-blood-chemicals/?intcmp=obnetwork#ixzz2XPrciTvI

  • Viral StoriesMore>>

  • Puerto Rico declares chikungunya epidemic

    Puerto Rico declares chikungunya epidemic

    Friday, July 18 2014 7:48 AM EDT2014-07-18 11:48:06 GMT
    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- Health officials in Puerto Rico on Thursday declared an epidemic of the mosquito-borne virus known as chikungunya, which was introduced into the Caribbean region late last year. Health Secretary Ana Rius said that more than 200 cases had been confirmed on the island as of June 25 and that the majority of them were reported in the capital of San Juan and nearby areas. The first case of chikungunya in the U.S. territory was reported in late May. Also on Thursday, ...
    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) -- Health officials in Puerto Rico on Thursday declared an epidemic of the mosquito-borne virus known as chikungunya, which was introduced into the Caribbean region late last year. Health Secretary Ana Rius said that more than 200 cases had been confirmed on the island as of June 25 and that the majority of them were reported in the capital of San Juan and nearby areas. The first case of chikungunya in the U.S. territory was reported in late May. Also on Thursday, ...
  • Couple and baby miss Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 that was downed over Ukraine

    Couple and baby miss Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 that was downed over Ukraine

    Friday, July 18 2014 7:47 AM EDT2014-07-18 11:47:36 GMT
    Imagine how you would feel if you were supposed to be on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 that was downed over eastern Ukraine on Thursday but changed your flight for a later time?
    Imagine how you would feel if you were supposed to be on Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 that was downed over eastern Ukraine on Thursday but changed your flight for a later time?
  • Company sets limits on how long workers can use bathroom

    Company sets limits on how long workers can use bathroom

    Wednesday, July 16 2014 11:02 AM EDT2014-07-16 15:02:02 GMT
    Should an employer have any say in how much time you spend in the bathroom on company time? According to an article on CNN.com, Chicago's Watersaver Faucet Company installed swipe card systems on bathrooms at their factory in an attempt to limit bathroom breaks to 6 minutes or less. WaterSaver disciplined nineteen workers for what they call "excessive use" of washrooms. FOX 5’s Wisdom Martin has more. READ MORE: http://money.cnn.com/2014/07/15/smallbusiness/bathroom-time-penalty/
    Should an employer have any say in how much time you spend in the bathroom on company time? According to an article on CNN.com, Chicago's Watersaver Faucet Company installed swipe card systems on bathrooms at their factory in an attempt to limit bathroom breaks to 6 minutes or less. WaterSaver disciplined nineteen workers for what they call "excessive use" of washrooms. FOX 5’s Wisdom Martin has more. READ MORE: http://money.cnn.com/2014/07/15/smallbusiness/bathroom-time-penalty/
Powered by WorldNow

WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
5151 Wisconsin Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20016
Main Number: (202) 244-5151
Newsroom: (202) 895-3000
fox5tips@wttg.com

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices