Hong Kong-Based Apple Supplier Biel Crystal Accused of Workers Rights Violations

biel_crystal_photo Hong Kong-based nonprofit Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM) has brought forth allegations (via Reuters) of major labor issues at Chinese factories belonging to Biel Crystal, a Hong-Kong based display supplier to Apple.

The workers rights group accuses the company of labor violations, such as forced 11-hour shifts, seven days a week, with only one day off each each month. Other accusations include the inadequate compensation to workers when they are injured, with employees reportedly required to sign blank contracts. The report also states that five workers at a company factory have committed suicide since 2011.

Apple also commented on the new accusations towards Biel Crystal:

"We insist that our suppliers provide safe working conditions, treat workers with dignity and respect, and use environmentally responsible manufacturing processes wherever Apple products are made," Apple said in a statement sent to Reuters in response to the SACOM report.

Biel Crystal employs more than 60,000 workers and has two factories in the Chinese provinces of Guangdong and Shenzhen. The new accusations also come after a number of alleged labor violations at Apple suppliers earlier this year, including reported workers rights issues at iPhone 5c supplier Jabil Circuit and primary supplier Pegatron. Apple also later issued a statement on the labor controversies surrounding Jabil Circuit, pledging to investigate.

Apple announced in July that it was forming an academic advisory board for its Supplier Responsibility program, saying that it wanted to ensure “safe and ethical working conditions wherever its products are made.” Apple has also published Supplier Responsibility Progress Reports every year since 2007, tracking the ethical progress of its suppliers in order to bring transparency to its product manufacturing process.

Top Rated Comments

gnasher729 Avatar
95 months ago
Do the factories mentioned actually produce things for Apple? If yes, how many of those 60,000 employees work on products made for Apple, and how many work on products made for other companies? Who are the other companies?

There have been reportedly 5 suicides of employees since 2011. The population of the USA is about 5,000 times the number of Biel employees. Have there been more or fewer than 25,000 suicides in the USA since 2011? (Answer: About 40,000 per year). Did these suicides have anything to do with being employed at the company? Did they have anything to do with working on products for Apple?
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
winston1236 Avatar
95 months ago
As a Hong Kong student, I just want to say: "Please annoy these attention w___e" (For give me language, but they are. )
They can't have sex in dorm, they don't have homework to do, so they try to get attention from anywhere they can find.
They don't care the truth, they don't do fact check, they just drop a claim in media and wait the media chase its tail. They are worse than Fox News.
(We have a "kidnap" happen at Saturday, by Sunday at least 70% people believe this is for human trafficking, so media suggest kick Chinese people out, but it turns out the mum possibly hides the baby.
And we almost shut down because four media w___e try to get donation.
Cry baby has become the new Hong Kong culture. )

Does Hong Kong student mean an employee trolling the internet for stories about your company to comment on?
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
numlock Avatar
95 months ago
What a ********* up mindset.
You have really not a clue what you are talking about.

"Nobody is saying people killing themselves right after working on the production of apple products". But of course that is _exactly_ what the article wants you to believe. Otherwise, why is Apple even mentioned?

"and then there is the hypocrisy of wanting to be the best, most loved and most popular but not wanting to bear any social responsibility. " Totally wrong. You just have to go to Apple's website, where since 2007 they have published what they have done to improve working conditions, year after year after year.
what kind of a mindless apple drone are you?

there is nothing in the article that makes an innocent reader think that there is a correlation between the production of apple parts/products and suicide. its perfectly logical to name the highest profile customer of this particular plant/company.

are you freaking joking me? referring to companies very own pr social responsibility pages (thats like trusting samsungs benchmark results). apple has dragged its feet on this subject and the environmental one. if having apple named in a report like this upsets you so much then let them know it offends your pristine view of them

you dont seem to be arguing against workers right so i would think you would applaud any and all tips apple (and others) receive to improve their way of doing business
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
IbisDoc Avatar
95 months ago
If that's the case, why bother mentioning Apple at all? Fact is, they stepped in at Foxconn, now they're expected to fix all the problems.

I recommend that they speak the only language that Apple and the defenders of all things Apple understand:

If they could avoid the cost of installation and maintenance of suicide nets (by no longer exploiting third world labor), Apple could further boost its profit margin. That should get Tim Cook fairly excited.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gixxerfool Avatar
95 months ago
That's a straw man argument. It's not about Apple being in charge of fixing. As the industry leader, which they celebrate at almost every opportunity, they SHOULDN'T BE DOING BUSINESS with these types of companies.

Of course, we all know if the employees were fighting for marriage equality, Apple would be ALL over it. That's a much more important issue that exploitation of work forces.


If that's the case, why bother mentioning Apple at all? Fact is, they stepped in at Foxconn, now they're expected to fix all the problems.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Drunken Master Avatar
95 months ago
This just in: the luxuries of the privileged classes throughout history built upon the broken backs and toil of exploited slaves.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

apple transfer google photos 1

Apple Launches Service for Transferring iCloud Photos and Videos to Google Photos

Wednesday March 3, 2021 12:04 pm PST by
Apple this week introduced a new service that's designed to make it quick and easy for iCloud users to transfer their stored photos and videos to Google Photos. As outlined in an Apple support document, you can go to Apple's privacy website and sign in to see the "Transfer a copy of your data" option. If you select this and go through all the steps, Apple will transfer your iCloud photos and ...
PIA23764 RoverNamePlateonMars web

NASA Mars Perseverance Rover Uses Same PowerPC Chipset Found in 1998 G3 iMac

Tuesday March 2, 2021 3:21 am PST by
NASA's Perseverance rover, which recently made history landing on the surface of Mars, is powered by the same processor used in an iMac more than 23 years old. Image Credit: NASA As reported by NewScientist (via Gizmodo), the rover includes the PowerPC 750 processor, the same chip used in the G3 iMac in 1998. The main chipset is the same; however, there are differences between the...
rosetta 2

Rosetta May Be Removed From M1 Macs in Some Regions on macOS 11.3

Tuesday March 2, 2021 5:20 pm PST by
Installing the upcoming macOS 11.3 software update on an M1 Mac may result in Rosetta 2 being removed in one or more regions around the world. In the third beta of macOS 11.3 seeded to developers for testing today, MacRumors contributor Steve Moser uncovered new strings in the beta's code indicating that "Rosetta will be removed upon installing this update." Another new string reads "Rosetta ...
iphone 6 in hand

Apple Faces Another iPhone Lawsuit Over 'Programmed Obsolescence'

Monday March 1, 2021 6:44 am PST by
Apple faces a new class-action lawsuit that accuses it of deliberately releasing iOS updates that slowly reduce the performance of an iPhone, forcing customers to upgrade their devices. The lawsuit comes from the Portuguese Consumer Protection Agency, Deco Proteste (via Marketeer), which in a statement says that it will proceed with a case against the Cupertino tech giant because it...
magsafe charging brick feature

Prosser: iPhone 12 MagSafe Battery Pack to Feature Reverse Charging

Monday March 1, 2021 1:18 pm PST by
Apple is working on MagSafe-compatible battery packs that will be compatible with the iPhone 12 models, and leaker Jon Prosser today said on the Genius Bar podcast that one version of the battery pack will feature "reverse charging." According to Prosser, Apple is working on two versions of the battery packs, one that's a standard version and one that's a premium version with reverse...
Screen Shot 2021 03 03 at 11

MagSafe Charging Port for iPhone Appears in Apple Patent

Wednesday March 3, 2021 1:30 am PST by
In a newly granted patent, Apple envisions a type of connectivity port using an iteration of its magnetic MagSafe charger to charge an iPhone, potentially paving the way for a future without Lightning. Submitted to the United States Patent and Trademark Office on Tuesday (via Patently Apple), the patent outlines a three-pinned MagSafe charger, similar to the ones found in older MacBook...
Apple Prefer Lightning Over USB C Feature

iPhone Sticking With Lightning Port Over USB-C for 'Foreseeable Future'

Tuesday March 2, 2021 9:32 am PST by
Apple will retain the Lightning connector on the iPhone for the "foreseeable future," with no intention of switching to USB-C, according to reliable analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. In spite of much of the industry moving toward USB-C, Apple will not be using it to replace the Lightning connector on the iPhone 13, or indeed on any iPhone model for the time being. In a note seen by MacRumors yesterday,...
iPad mini pro feature

Sketchy Rumor Claims 'iPad Mini Pro' Launching in Second Half of 2021

Wednesday March 3, 2021 3:04 am PST by
Apple is expected to launch a sixth-generation iPad mini in the first half of 2021, possibly as soon as this March, based on long-standing rumors. However, a new rumor out of Asia that has gained traction in the last 24 hours suggests an "iPad mini Pro" will arrive in the second half of this year. According to a post on Korean blog Naver, whose rumor track record is unknown, the device...
apple pencil 3 leak

New Apple Pencil Allegedly Leaks With Glossy Finish and Redesigned Tip

Wednesday March 3, 2021 6:17 am PST by
Images supposedly depicting a third-generation Apple Pencil have been shared on Twitter by the leaker known as "Mr. White." The purported new Apple Pencil appears to share a very similar design to the current, second-generation Apple Pencil, which is shorter than the previous version and charges inductively on the side of an iPad. The updated Apple Pencil appears to have a glossy...
apple watch ecg wrist

Apple Watch ECG Feature Gets Approved in Australia

Wednesday March 3, 2021 2:07 am PST by
The Australian government has approved ECG functionality on the Apple Watch, giving Apple the all-clear to launch the feature for Apple Watch users in the country, according to a regulatory document first spotted by The 8-Bit. Earlier last month, the Apple Watch's irregular heart rhythm notification received approval in Australia, although ECG did not. Irregular heart rhythm is a feature...