Kohler says it will conduct its own investigation. "It is clearly disappointing to find that our broker's supplier's supplier employed slave labor practices," says Steve Cassady, director of global procurement at Kohler.
What's the standard for oversight? Here's one opinion.
The products of slave labor enter the U.S. economy because corporations don't ask their suppliers enough questions and haven't worked to root out slavery, says Seungjin Whang, co-director of the Stanford Graduate School of Business's Global Supply Chain Management Forum in Stanford, Calif.
"The major companies should be jointly responsible for labor practices with their suppliers and their suppliers' suppliers," Whang says.
Outside the for-profit context, here's a contrary opinion from Milwaukee's Auxiliary Bishop, Richard Sklba at an October 22, 2002 meeting on sexual abuse by priests.
"Don't you, as a bishop, know what a priest is doing in your diocese?" Sneesby [Michael Sneesby] asked.
"Not all of them," Sklba said.
Something to think about whenever you see the Kohler logo.