Cornell to end Nike deal

7/26/2010: Sure enough, Nike folds and pays the back wages themselves, according to Steven Greenhouse in the NY Times. Though they can’t quite bring themselves to admit that:

A Nike spokeswoman, Kate Meyers, said Monday that the $1.5 million was for “a worker relief fund” and was not for severance.

Speaking of things that people don’t seem to be able to admit, at this rate maybe Howard Slusher will stop trying to get UO students and employees to pay for the Matt Court Arena parking?

7/5/2010: From Jack Stripling of

Absent “significant progress” toward the resolution of an ongoing labor dispute in Honduras, Cornell University will follow the University of Wisconsin at Madison’s lead and end its licensing agreement with Nike. The decision, issued by President David Skorton in an internal letter Monday, is being heralded by anti-sweatshop activists as a significant victory in a battle over Nike’s refusal to pay severance to displaced workers in its supply chain. …

While Nike has offered training and vocational programs, the company insists the payments are the responsibility of the subcontractors. That position, however, runs afoul of many university codes of conduct – including Cornell’s, which holds licensees responsible for the actions of subcontractors, the university’s oversight committee maintains.

I am guessing Nike will fold on this and pay the back wages themselves.

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