As Apple held its Annual General Meeting in Cupertino, California on February 27, activists from the labour rights group Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) rallied in front of Apple stores in Hong Kong to protest the continuing abuse of workers that make the company’s popular electronics products.
In our last issue of the Update, we reported on the controversy surrounding a recent investigation of three Apple Inc. supplier factories in China owned by Foxconn, the world's largest electronics manufacturer. The Fair Labor Association's (FLA's) investigation found evidence of widespread violations of local laws and the FLA's code of conduct, including overtime hours well above legal limits, failure to provide workers their full overtime premium pay, numerous health and safety violations, and union committees in which most of the representatives were management personnel.
Because the FLA’s investigation has been such a prominent part of the public discussion about Apple, Foxconn, and the rights of the workers making their products, it is important to review some of the key issues identified in the FLA report and to summarize outstanding questions and concerns that have been identified by SACOM. MSN's brief analysis is an effort to do that.
On March 29, the Fair Labor Association (FLA) released a much-anticipated report on its investigation into the labour practices at three Foxconn factories in China employing close to 180,000 workers who manufacture electronic devices for Apple including iPads and iPhones.
Family members react - May 2011
Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) has released a statement blaming a May 20 explosion at Foxconn's Ipad plant on the company, which it says is putting productivity over worker safety. The blast, which killed two workers and injured 16, could have been prevented, says SACOM. The group points to an early May report in which it raised issues with dangerous aluminum dust in the factory's polishing department where the blast occurred.