Sunday 29 December 2019 2:09 pm

Google workers exposed to chemical that causes birth defects

Google has admitted that some of its employees have been exposed to harmful chemicals than can cause birth defects.

Factory workers making Google products, but hired by an outside supplier, have been exposed to N-Methylpyrrolidone, which can cause birth defects and serious skin and respiratory irritation.

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The workers, who are located at an unspecified location, had to submerge motherboard chips in the chemical every day.

Google admitted the violation in a report sent to investors, according to The Telegraph.

The report says it found 525 violations of its supplier code across a number of factories in Asia and the US.

This included some employees working more than 60 hours a week or more than six consecutive days.

Ted Smith, the founder and former executive director of the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, told The Telegraph that the violation was a serious problem.

“Most of the workers in these factories are women of childbearing age,” he said.

“There have been a series of studies done in the workplace and surrounding communities showing high rates of miscarriages from women exposed to this chemical.

“Brands at the top of the food chain have been sailing by, pretending that they didn’t know what was going on. There has been lots of activity to get them to focus on these issues.”

It is unclear how many workers have been exposed to the dangerous chemical or if any other suppliers have similar components.

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While N-Methylpyrrolidone is legal itself in Europe, it has been listed as a restricted chemical due to its side effects.

Google declined to comment.