Walt Disney was urged yesterday to ensure its licensed manufacturers abided by China's Labour Law and its own code of conduct amid alleged abuses of workers' rights. Efforts were called for to set up an independent monitoring mechanism which included workers' participation. A joint survey by two Christian organisations - one based in Hong Kong and the other in Britain - at four of Disney's licensed factories in Guangdong over the past seven months found violations of rights over wages, accommodation, the working environment and insurance coverage. The plants are in Guangzhou, Dongguan and Panyu. About 1,100 workers, mostly young women from Guangdong's neighbouring provinces, were alleged to have been paid an average salary below the official minimum wage. Workers were also required to pay numerous deposits, mostly non-refundable, such as entrance fees and 'a temporary residence fee, which is absolutely in violation of the law', said Eli Chan Ka Wai, associate director of the Hong Kong Christian Industrial Committee, one of the investigating groups. Delays in salary payments were common. In one case, workers had not received any pay for three months. In another, the Hong Kong owner of a factory was said to have fled, owing workers three months wages estimated at 280,000 yuan (HK$260,000), said committee officer Alice Kwan. Overtime payments were also subject to abuse. Working days of 16 hours were not uncommon and payments were not made as required by the law. One factory paid a worker only eight fen (about seven cents) for an entire evening of overtime work, the survey found. Workers had neither labour contracts nor social insurance coverage despite clear stipulations in the law for both. Accommodation for workers was meagre and many were not allowed to stay in dormitories on their days off, it was alleged. Two of the four factories did not post the required code of conduct to inform the workers of their status. Most workers were not aware of their labour rights, the groups said. Disney could not be reached for comment last night.