For nearly half a century the U.S. government has protected American factory workers from occupational illness and injury, but a Salt Lake Tribune investigation shows such protections seldom extend to Chinese workers who now make most U.S. goods. In a four part series, reporter Loretta Tofani reveals how Chinese workers are dying slow, difficult deaths caused by the toxic chemicals they use to make products in virtually every industry for export to the U.S. and the world. Tofani visited 25 factories in China. She interviewed Chinese workers in hospitals, homes, and outside of their factories, observing first hand how Chinese workers routinely get fatal diseases or lose limbs making products for U.S. consumers. She obtained their medical records and talked to attorneys, business leaders, government officials, and labor activists. She examined thousands of import documents to reveal direct ties between U.S. companies, unsafe factories, and dying or maimed workers. Her investigation reveals that Chinese workers are paying the true price of cheap U.S. goods from China.

Tofani’s story was partially funded by CIR’s Dick Goldensohn Fund.

>> Read “American imports, Chinese deaths” in the Salt Lake Tribune.

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Carrie Ching is an award-winning, independent multimedia journalist and producer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. For six years, she led digital storytelling projects at the Center for Investigative Reporting as senior multimedia producer. Her multimedia reports have been featured by, The Huffington Post, Rolling Stone, Grist,, Fast Company, the Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, KQED, PBS NewsHour,, Mother Jones, Public Radio International, Poynter, Columbia Journalism Review and many other publications. Her specialty is crafting digital narratives and exploring ways to use video, audio, photography, animation and interactive graphics to push the boundaries of storytelling on the Web, tablets and mobile. Her work has been honored with awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, Investigative Reporters and Editors, Best of the West, the Online News Association, Scripps Howard, The Gracies, and was part of the entry in a Pulitzer-finalist project. Prior to her time at CIR she was a magazine and book editor, video journalist, newspaper reporter and TV comedy scriptwriter. She was on the 2010 Eddie Adams Workshop faculty as a multimedia producer working with MediaStorm to teach digital storytelling techniques to photojournalists. She completed a master’s degree in journalism at UC Berkeley in 2005.