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ICFTU criticizes Apple Foxconn report

updated 01:35 pm EDT, Fri August 18, 2006

Foxconn report criticized

The International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) has criticized Apple's recent report on possible labor abuse because it was not independently verified. The Cupertino-based company launched the investigation following reports of sweatshop-like conditions in iPod manufacturing facilities in China managed by Foxconn. "We are not impressed either by the report or by the findings of Apple," said Janek Kuczkiewicz, director of human and trade union rights at the ICFTU. Apple's team interviewed 100 workers at an iPod manufacturing plant in China, but the facility employs an estimated 30,000 workers devoted to iPod production. Apple said it also cross-checked staff logs, and visited factory floors as well as dormitories, according to the BBC. "We do not know the conditions in which the interviews were held. We have serious reservations about the report," Kuczkiewicz said.

Apple today in a statement said that it discovered no instances of forced overtime, and employees confirmed that they could decline overtime requests without penalty. Apple also said there were "overtime limit exceptions in unusual circumstances," but failed to specify the criteria for those circumstances along with the upper limit for working hours during those instances. The Cupertino-based company also failed to ask Foxconn employees whether they preferred a decent wage or minimum wage with overtime, according to the report.

"We believe it is the workers' role to monitor standards. That has not happened at the Apple plant in China," said Kuczkiewicz. "We would like to remind Apple there are other labor standards -- freedom from discrimination, freedom of association and freedom to bargain collectively."

Apple initially responded to claims of labor abuse in its iPod factories in mid-June, saying that it would look into working conditions to ensure compliance with its supplier code of conduct. Foxconn hastily denied the claims, but later admitted to enforcing unfair labor practices.

by MacNN Staff





  1. chadpengar

    Joined: Dec 1969


    yeah right

    like a bunch of socialist trade union people are going to be happy with anything less than full forced membership of the whole workforce

  1. garmonbosia

    Joined: Dec 1969


    uh huh

    You fascists will never be satisfied until we are all helpless subjects of the corporate/political state

  1. nedlohs

    Joined: Dec 1969


    ICFTU critisizes Apple

    Is anyone trying to impress ICFTU? I don't think so. I also don't think that the goal of Apple was to impress them either!

    My 2 cents and worth every penny you paid for it :)

  1. hudson1

    Joined: Dec 1969


    How many workers?

    "the facility employs an estimated 30,000 workers devoted to iPod production"

    Anyone else find that a little hard to believe?

  1. jhorvatic

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Apple did there investigation and now they have hired an international company that does these kinds of investigations all over the world to look into it further. What more can you ask for? It's not like Apple said everythings fine and were leaving it the way it was. And if ICFTU wasn't there, how do they know it's any different? Why accuse Apple of not doing enough when they have no proof otherwise.

  1. jhorvatic

    Joined: Dec 1969


    The Future

    Apple States the following in there report. The Future Recognizing that some aspects of workplace auditing (such as health and safety) lie beyond our current expertise, we’ve engaged the services of Verité, an internationally recognized leader in workplace standards dedicated to ensuring that people around the world work under safe, fair and legal conditions. We are committed to ensuring compliance with our Code of Conduct and will complete audits of all final assembly suppliers of Mac and iPod products in 2006.

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