Tagged With labour
Apple has banned "bonded servitude", which means it won't let its supplier factories make their new hires work for free to pay for the costs of hiring them. Good! Also: Why the hell is this just happening now?
The internet keeps a close eye on what companies like Apple, Samsung and Sony import out of Southeast Asia, since those components hint at products coming down the pipeline. The US Department of Labor keeps a close watch too, but for a very different reason: uncovering "modern-day slavery" by the factories that make electronics.
It's bad enough when overworked Chinese adults are killing themselves and rioting because of our Apple lust — adding kids under 16 is just awful. But Apple says it's cutting these industrious, exploited kiddos out of the supply chain.
Another report from a Chinese labour watchdog suggests that reports of underage and abused employees in the gadget manufacturing industry only scratched the surface.
Last month, a Chinese labour watchdog pointed the finger at Samsung for employing and abusing underage workers in its factories. Samsung has since conducted an audit and found no evidence of underage workers — but it does have plenty of other problems to worry about.
The Wall Street Journal reports that working conditions are getting better at the embattled Foxconn manufacturing facility where 150,000 Chinese workers assemble iPhones and iPads for the rest of the world. According to the report, wages have risen by 16 per cent, and the probation period before entry-level workers become permanent has been reduced from six months to three months.
Internships suck. You do menial work for token payment (or none), all in the name of experience. At Foxconn, it's about the same — but you great free housing and more money.
The answer is pretty obvious, right? It's cheaper labour! But is that the only reason why Apple (and other companies) outsource its workforce to China as opposed to keeping them in America? No. There's more. The New York Times has an excellent report on why Apple ignores America when it comes to making the iPhone, and how that's better for Apple.
This you should know: There is a good chance that the gadgets you use every day were manufactured by workers who are miserable. This fact has ensnared Apple (and others) on numerous occasions, and now it's Microsoft's turn.
With working conditions and security policy down Apple's supply chain under serious fire, an Apple insider reached out to us. Apple's blasé attitude toward its manufacturers' labour practices, he says, is old news.