Apple and Slavery

This weekend on there was a particularly good article about Apple and the production of their products. Ignoring the insane number of ads in the article, pay particular attention to the section about the Chinese manufacturing (starts about page 5). This is what I was talking about when I told you about the Mike Daisy show in NYC called “The Agony and Ecstasy of Steve Jobs“. The working conditions in China are deplorable. Everything is made by hand and there are thousands of workers there. Apple knows about this and yet they still continue to allow the conditions to continue. This is something to think about next time you say how wonderful a company Apple is.

Workers at Longhua and other Foxconn plants in China work under grueling conditions – usually 10 to 12 hours a day, sometimes for seven days straight without overtime pay. They’re not allowed to speak to one another on the job or to leave their workstations – not even to go to the bathroom – without permission from guards. Some of them perform repetitive tasks for up to 10 hours at a time without a break. Supervisors berate workers with foul language and warn that if they fall behind on production they will be replaced. Some have reportedly been beaten for mistakes they allegedly made on the assembly line. For all this they earn a little more than a dollar an hour at most.

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