Foxconn China Factory, Making Amazon Echoes And Kindles, Violating Labor Rules: Report

Employees of Foxconn engaged in making popular Amazon devices were being forced ot work for long hours and the company was engaged in worker abuse and poor pay as well, claimed a report prepared by China Labor Watch.

An investigation in this regard has been initiated by it, Amazon has said.

This is the second critical examination of the factory working conditions of Foxconn in just over a year’s time.

Numerous violations at Foxconn’s Hengyang factory in eastern China, was found by it, said the China Labor Watch which is a New York City-based non-profit group. Amazon Echo, Kindle and tablets are manufactured at that factory.

Interview of employees and photos from the factory were collected by the organization. Foxconn employs more than 1,500 interns aged between 16 and 18 years who had to work for six days a week in 10 hours shift every day, the organization claimed to have discovered. The group said that Chinese labor laws had been violated by the company at the factory in terms of the hours of work and the number of interns employed.

Amazon said in a statement to the media that violations of its supplier code of conduct is not tolerated by it and added that oversight of the factory had been enhanced by it. “We do not tolerate violations of our Supplier Code of Conduct. We regularly assess suppliers, using independent auditors as appropriate, to monitor continued compliance and improvement — if we find violations, we take appropriate steps, including requesting immediate corrective action,” Amazon said.

“We are urgently investigating these allegations and addressing this with Foxconn at the most senior level. Additional teams of specialists arrived on-site yesterday to investigate, and we’ve initiated weekly audits of this issue,” the company added.

There were no comments available on the issue from Foxconn.

More than 7,400 workers are employed at the factory by Foxconn in total. 21 per cent of the total workforce of a facility can be comprised of interns, according to China Labor Watch. But under the Chinese law mo more than 10 per cent of the total workforce can be comprised of interns.

There was no response to the issue available from the Chinese government.

China Labor Watch said that recruitment of students to work at the facility as well as supervising them at work is done by teachers who are appointed by Foxconn. The report from the organization said that teachers “often physically and verbally attack interns” and many employees witnessed a teacher who “aggressively grabbed the intern by the ear, did not let him swipe out of work and scolded him.”

The money that Foxconn pays to the interns working at the factory has been reduced by the company to $248 per month in 2019 from $276 per month in 2018, claimed the report from China Labor Watch. Additionally, stipends and employment rewards are no longer received by the interns. The organization also said that the same amount of money was reduced by Foxconn for its full-time workers.

(Adapted from CNN.com)

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