NPR's Frank Langfitt talks with Steve Inskeep on 'Morning Edition'
At one point overnight as many as 2,000 workers at a Foxconn plant in Taiyuan, China, were involved in a riot that drew 5,000 police officers to the site and has closed the facility that makes parts for Apple's iPhones and hardware for other companies including Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard.
Apple and its China-based supplier Foxconn have agreed to limit worker overtime and significantly improve health and safety conditions at the plants that produce, among other products, the iPhone and iPad. The move comes after an investigation by the Fair Labor Association found Foxconn factories violate numerous Chinese work rules.
The Fair Labor Association has released its audit of Apple's largest supplier in China, Foxconn. The group found "significant issues with working conditions" at three factories there. The labor rights group, which was asked by Apple to audit the plants, found excessive overtime, problems with overtime compensation, health and safety issues as well as communication gaps that have led to widespread sense of unsafe working conditions. Melissa Block talks with NPR's Steve Henn.
A review completed by the Fair Labor Association found "significant issues with working conditions at three factories in China operated by Apple's major supplier Foxconn."
Apple joined the Fair Labor Association after various reports detailed poor working conditions at the supplier factories. Those reports spawned protests against Apple and Apple responded by saying the FLA would audit the Chinese factories.
In its press release the FLA said the big issues revolved around overtime. The FLA reports:
Audits of working conditions are under way at Foxconn's manufacturing plants in China, a key link in Apple's supply chain of iPhones, iPads and other devices. The effort will include visits to at least three sites, "each with more than 100,000 workers," says Auret Van Heerden, president of the Fair Labor Association.
"So we've taken a representative sample of over 35,000 workers," Van Heerden tells All Things Considered co-host Robert Siegel, in an interview airing Wednesday.