Case Background

Thousands of street children in Latin America, primarily in Guatemala and Honduras, were found dead and disabled due to addiction to inhaling glue. The glue that mostly available in these areas is toluene-based glue made and distributed by H.B. Fuller S.A. This company is a subsidiary of Kativo Chemical Industries which wholly owned by H.B. Fuller Company of St. Paul Minnesota. Based on this fact, the H.B. Fuller Company of St. Paul Minnesota was alleged to be responsible for the cause of death of homeless children in Latin America. The toluene-based glue is a very strong adhesive and highly water resistant. It is produced merely for the industrial purpose, such as for the shoe manufacturers, leather workers, carpenters, furniture makers, and small shoe repair shops. The toluene is a sweet-smelling chemical which can destroy human nerves. The occasional inhalation can cause nosebleeds and rashes, whereas habitual inhalation can result several disorders such as neurological dysfunction, loss of sight and hearing, leukemia and many other disabilities. If the inhalation is done perpetually, it can cause a death.

Questions and Answers
1. In your judgment, is H. B. Fuller responsible for the addiction of street children to its Resistol products? Do you agree or disagree with the statement that the social conditions in Honduras and Guatemala are ultimately responsible for misuse of H. B. Fuller¶s products and that neither the product nor the company is to blame? Do your agree or disagree that a parent company is not responsible for the activities of its subsidiaries? Explain your answers fully.

Answer: a. Directly H. B. Fuller does not need to responsible for the addiction of street children who addicted with Resistol, because a corporation is morally responsible only for those acts and their foreseen injurious effects of their business activities, such as the corporation knowingly and freely performed or brought about which it was morally wrong for the corporation to fail to prevent. In this case H.B. Fuller is not morally responsible since they release its product into market, the product and H.B. fuller already informing and explained not to misused its product. When understanding the circumstances of why H.B. Fuller¶s product was abused, in the other side H.B.

middlemen.B. Nevertheless. Answer: H. In your judgment. A parent company is the leader to its subsidiaries what a superior is to its subordinate. b. Fuller¶s mission statement it was stated that the overall objectives of the corporation include a societal contribution. I agree.B Fuller conduct itself in morally appropriate manner? Explain your answer. . The company insisted not to change or innovate its product design. the social condition is certainly a main cause. and corrupt distributors who most likely made a profit from selling the glue to the children on the streets. Fuller Company had executed its business process (production process and other activities) in a proper procedure. 2. H. Understanding that the goal of a corporation is to maximize the profits of its shareholders.B. Its actions that were considered not morally right are: 1. If. According to the due care theory. however. Not only does the social condition factor into the misuse of Fuller¶s products but also does the economic factor relate to the issue. Fuller Company did not fully act in a morally appropriate manner because they insisted not to change the design of its product. I disagree if a parent company is not responsible for the activities of its subsidiaries. Fuller really did not have a social obligation. than the company cannot neglect helping its community. May be there are some parties are involved in this unfortunate condition that have not been taken account such as retailers. There are three areas that should be covered under the exercise of due care theory: product design. c. It also provided information about the products and the dangerous of misusing the glue to the public. Fuller Company had not been fully in morally appropriate manner. a company is perceived to know better about its product than any other parties. did H. The economic condition is certainly not the only single bearer of cause for the misuse of Fuller¶s products.Fuller actually helped out the economic problem by providing employment for the region. in H.B. processes and information.

B. Reduce availability ofAdding mustard-seed oil the glue i. Pay social workers to work with street children morally questionable g.A. it tried to cancel the execution of the law for its own interest. remembering that Latin America was the market place of its product.B.B.B. Fuller Company as the parent company of H. by increasing the price 30% f. Adding mustard-seed oil effective d. has a full control of its own subsidiaries. In fact. Fuller: c. Provide information to distributors h. As explained before. If this law was implemented. Replace toluene with chemical cyclohexane e. Fuller S. by selling only big quantities ii. Stop selling resistol to i. Fuller S. Retailers not effective least desired option advised not effective ii. this law was made to protect the people live from any abusive behavior of adhesive product. any action taken by a subsidiary of a company is also the responsibility of the parent company.A. retailers and industrial customers . H. Because of the bankruptcy threat. Its second tier subsidiary tried to persuade the government to cancel a particular law for its own interest.B. if anything. The Honduran law which stated importing and producing any adhesive product without any mustard-seed oil in it was prohibited.2. the H. Educate children about the dangers Options for H. Control distribution laws not enforced b.A. Fuller Company did not want to take the responsibility and put it merely on its subsidiary H. operation would be closed down. Fuller S. should the company have done that it did not do? Options for the government: a. What. H. 3. 3.B.

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