For Immediate Release: March 29, 2012
Washington, DC – Today’s Fair Labor Association (FLA) report details a groundbreaking agreement that – when implemented – will have life-changing consequences for the 1.2 million Chinese employees at Apple’s largest supplier Foxconn, according to Human Rights First, a member of the FLA Board of Directors.
“This FLA agreement with Foxconn will safeguard the health and welfare [of] the company’s employees by bringing their work conditions into compliance with basic human rights standards,” said Human Rights First’s Meg Roggensack. “The key to the report’s success, however, will be implementation of this agreement. Talk is cheap. The steps needed to protect workers in Apple’s supply chain may not be.”
The independent FLA investigation that produced today’s report focused on three Foxconn facilities in Shenzhen and Chengdu. These facilities produce products for Apple, a company that in its own independent report found that Foxconn has historically sidestepped limitations on the number of hours employees can work and failed to compensate employees fairly. Foxconn’s workers have also faced hazardous work conditions.
According to today’s agreement, all Foxconn employees will be limited to 49 hours per week, and Foxconn will work to ensure workers’ take-home pay remains the same as they receive now for hours that far exceed that ceiling. Workers will also see a marked improvement in factory conditions, improvements that will be consistently monitored by FLA’s independent inspectors.
Apple is not the only company that will directly feel the impact of today’s agreement. Foxconn also produces products for companies such as Dell, Amazon and Hewlett Packard.
“All companies that do business with Foxconn, the largest employer in China, should take immediate steps to follow Apple’s lead and insist that working conditions in every one of the company’s factories meet this new industry standard,” Roggensack concluded. “Companies have a responsibility to face the grim reality of current production practices and must commit to reversing them, so that their products are – not just in technical, but in human terms – ‘insanely’ great.”
For more information or to speak with a member of Human Rights First’s staff about today’s report, please contact Brenda Bowser Soder at 202-370-3323 or email@example.com.