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Apple Partners with Labor Group to Monitor Workplace Conditions at Suppliers' Factories


Bloomberg reports that Apple has agreed to allow the Fair Labor Association (FLA) to access its suppliers' facilities to monitor workplace conditions in the wake of publicity surrounding worker suicides at Apple's primary manufacturing partner Foxconn.
The world’s most valuable technology company joins Nike Inc. (NKE), Nestle SA (NESN) and Syngenta AG (SYNN) in turning to the Fair Labor Association, set up in 1999 to monitor workplace conditions globally in an initiative by former U.S. President Bill Clinton. Apple is the first technology business to sign up to the FLA as a participating company, the Washington-based body said today in a press release.
In the press release (PDF), Apple senior vice president Jeff Williams notes that Apple routinely performs audits of its suppliers' facilities but that the company is pleased to engage with the Fair Labor Association as an independent monitoring group.
"We're extremely proud to be the first technology company admitted to the FLA," said Jeff Williams, Apple's senior vice president of Operations. "Last year we performed more than 200 audits at our supplier's facilities around the world. With the benefit of the FLA's experience and expertise, we will continue to drive improvements for workers and provide even greater transparency into our supply chain."
The FLA reports that it worked with Apple last year on the company's training programs regarding labor rights and worker standards, and that Apple will bring all of its workplace compliance standards in line with the FLA's guidelines over the next two years.

Top Rated Comments

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30 months ago
Cynically I'd say Apple know the rumours over awful working conditions are bad PR and so try to combat that rather than any heartfelt humanitarian concerns, but that being said:

Good move Apple.
Rating: 5 Positives
30 months ago

Cynically I'd say Apple know the rumours over awful working conditions are bad PR and so try to combat that rather than any heartfelt humanitarian concerns, but that being said:

Good move Apple.


It doesn't seem to stop any other companies from ignoring complaints for years. Exxon? Nike? Gap? At least Apple audits places regularly and responds instead of waiting till it goes away.
Rating: 5 Positives
30 months ago

It's about time. Quite frankly, the human rights conditions in these factories are worse than Darfur.


Quite frankly, you are quite full of it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/War_in_Darfur

One's a condition of overwork and stressful working conditions.

The other is war, starvation and genocide.

They aren't comparable, so stop trying.

Oh, and I downgraded you.
Rating: 4 Positives
30 months ago

Almost none of us really CAN do anything about it. Those with power aren't those who care.


We elect those in power.

Nobody in a democracy can shirk personal responsibility.

If we wanted to, we could do something about this tomorrow. But in reality we don't really want to (and I include myself in this, I'm as "guilty" as everyone else).
Rating: 4 Positives
30 months ago

Cynically I'd say Apple know the rumours over awful working conditions are bad PR and so try to combat that rather than any heartfelt humanitarian concerns, but that being said:

Good move Apple.


I have to agree. The primary care of Foxconn employees lies with? Foxconn. Whilst I applaud the gesture, Foxconn's company policy is it's own concern.

Stopping depression in the younger generation is unlikely to be influenced by this decision either.

It's a fundamental flaw in Chinese Governence over which neither Apple, Foxconn or the LG have any control over whatsoever.
Rating: 4 Positives
30 months ago

You can always vote with your wallet. If you are unhappy with how a certain company does its dealings, don't buy their stuff and educate others why they shouldn't do that either. And communicate with that company if you actually want to buy their stuff but can't due to them being immoral.


Your logic has a fatal flaw: what alternative companies provide better value and a better work environment for their employees? I'm all for being "moral" as long as I'm not being ripped off on a garbage product, and I don't see a lot of Apple's competitors setting up shop in comfortable plants with high pay, pensions, and perks.
Rating: 3 Positives
30 months ago

We elect those in power.

Nobody in a democracy can shirk personal responsibility.

If we wanted to, we could do something about this tomorrow. But in reality we don't really want to (and I include myself in this, I'm as "guilty" as everyone else).


Oh, Lord. You're laboring under the delusion that the masses have almost any real say about what happens in our country? Hell, our President's so hemmed in by a republican congress that he can't even do anything to help anyone. Every single time there's an initiative to help anyone, Americans included, republicans shoot it down.
Rating: 3 Positives
30 months ago
It's about time. Quite frankly, the human rights conditions in these factories are worse than Darfur.
Rating: 3 Positives
30 months ago

I think you chose not to read my last line…


Or maybe he read the cynical first one.
Rating: 3 Positives
30 months ago

It doesn't seem to stop any other companies from ignoring complaints for years. Exxon? Nike? Gap? At least Apple audits places regularly and responds instead of waiting till it goes away.


I think you chose not to read my last line…
Rating: 3 Positives

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