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After all the publicity about how Apple and its contractors were going to improve working conditions and wages in the Chinese plants where Apple's popular products like iPads and iPhones are made, it doesn't look like much is changing. At least not if it costs Apple and Foxconn any money:
The FLA could not, for example, get the companies to agree to comply with Chinese law limiting maximum overtime hours until the summer of 2013, and the companies continue to subject Foxconn workers to 60 hours of overtime per month—nearly twice the amount of overtime permitted by law. The companies also pledged only to study whether the workers were right in their complaints that wages are too low to meet basic needs. And most telling, there is no indication the companies have kept their public promise to pay back wages to the hundreds of thousands of employees Foxconn systematically cheated by working them “off the clock.”
So basically, Apple got its good headlines by claiming it would clean up its act, and now it's trying to keep on screwing workers without anyone noticing. I guess money-saving decisions like this are why Apple CEO Tim Cook is the highest-paid CEO in the country?

A fair day's wage

  • Their recent strike will bring Houston janitors from $8.35 an hour now to $9.35 an hour in 2016. Management had been pressing for a contract that would have paid the janitors $8.85 an hour in 2017. Josh Eidelson explains what else the janitors won, what they conceded, and how they made it happen.
  • Crystal Sugar workers have been locked out for a year, because the CEO of this very profitable company sees the union contract as a "tumor" to be gotten rid of at whatever cost. It's one of the most depressing, infuriating stories out there.
  • Greenskeepers are picketing a country club in Oakland, California, after the club unilaterally changed their health care plans.
  • Seriously, Verizon?

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 09:00 AM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions.

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Comment Preferences

  •  certainly why some of us should boycott ipads (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Thomas Twinnings, Larsstephens
    So basically, Apple got its good headlines by claiming it would clean up its act, and now it's trying to keep on screwing workers without anyone noticing. I guess money-saving decisions like this are why Apple CEO Tim Cook is the highest-paid CEO in the country?

    Don't roof rack me bro', Now the brown's comin' down; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; "Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies...Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委‽ Warning - some snark above ‽

    by annieli on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 09:12:50 AM PDT

    •  so you will (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fuzzyguy

      also boycott the other products made at the Foxcon factory? Do you know the other products that come out of Foxcon?  How about products sold by Apple that come out of other factories? Will you boycott virtually all PC makers, printer makers, cell phone makers?

      "Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government" T. Jefferson

      by azureblue on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 09:20:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  some us might boycott entire slippery slopes /nt (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Larsstephens

        Don't roof rack me bro', Now the brown's comin' down; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; "Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies...Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委‽ Warning - some snark above ‽

        by annieli on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 09:22:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  you can have my fuzzy logic toaster when you pry (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Larsstephens

        it from my cold dead buttery hands

        Don't roof rack me bro', Now the brown's comin' down; Präsidentenelf-maßschach; "Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies...Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委‽ Warning - some snark above ‽

        by annieli on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 09:24:26 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  what other products are from Foxcon? (0+ / 0-)

        Seriously, I hear that a lot, but nobody ever lists what specific other products are made by Foxcon.

        •  Just the tip of the iceberg... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          fuzzyguy

          Acer Inc.
          Amazon.com
          Apple Inc.
          Cisco
          Dell
          Hewlett-Packard
          Intel
          Microsoft
          Motorola Mobility
          Nintendo
          Nokia
          Samsung Electronics
          Sony
          Toshiba
          Vizio

          And I would say that the working conditions of the Apple Factories are the best of the bunch...

          •  This is a pet peeve of mine as well. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Larsstephens

            The Apple bashing is fun and all, but FoxConn is the largest producer of high end retail electronics components in the world. They make electronics for innumerable retail outlets. The Apple specific manufacturing plants are some of the best run in terms of how the workers are treated which should send alarm bells off about other electronics out there. Boycotting Apple blindly and buying the Acer netbook doesn't accomplish any significant change. Bringing up that these components could be manufactured here in the states for only just a little bit more than what it costs in China is crazy. We need component manufacturing here in the states. Our labor laws certainly need a lot of work, but comparing worker treatment here with that in China is like night and day.

            I hope people take a good look at the above list and the devices they are using.

  •  I guess business ethics is like politics (0+ / 0-)

    What they say they'll do often has nothing in common with what they actually do.

    Seriously, when a powerful corporation is exposed, and then claims (with great media fanfare) that it will improve its behavior, does anyone actually believe it anymore?

  •  This is a crock (0+ / 0-)

    From the LA Times:

    The Fair Labor Assn. said in a status report Tuesday that Foxconn, the Chinese supplier that has been heavily criticized in the past for making employees work alarmingly long hours and live in cramped dormitories, had successfully completed more than 280 actions recommended earlier this year by the group.

    Those include reducing workers' hours, enforcing breaks, changing the design of workers' equipment, updating maintenance policies and testing emergency equipment.

    After reports of suicides and dangerous working conditions at Foxconn, Apple and its suppliers agreed to allow the Fair Labor Assn. to inspect three Foxconn facilities in February and March in "one of the most comprehensive and detailed assessments in the history of manufacturing," the group said. As part of the process, the FLA provided Apple and Foxconn with its findings and recommendations, including a 15-month action plan with target dates for completion.

    Independent investigators hired by the FLA returned to each of the factories from June 25 to July 6 to verify that several of those actions had been completed.

    "Our verification shows that the necessary changes, including immediate health and safety measures, have been made," said Auret van Heerden, president of the association. "We are satisfied that Apple has done its due diligence thus far to hold Foxconn accountable for complying with the action plan."

    Here

    Certainly from our standpoint, this gives us a sense of momentum -- when the United States has accolades tossed its way, rather than shoes. - PJ Crowley

    by nsfbr on Tue Aug 28, 2012 at 10:04:26 AM PDT

  •  Mitt Romney admits using slave labor (Video) (0+ / 0-)

    Happy Labor Day!

    Mitt Romney "I wish we weren't unionized!"

    http://youtu.be/...  

    Mitt Romney admits buying Chinese sweatshop while at Bain. 20,000 young girls. 12 girls per room. 120 girls per bathroom. Huge fences with guard towers.

    http://youtu.be/...

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