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Al Jazeera video highlights allegations of labour rights abuses at Foxconn factories in China manufacturing Apple products

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Article
16 January 2012

China's Foxconn workers: from suicide threats to a trade union?

Author: Lijia Zhang, Guardian [UK]

[I]n Wuhan, in central China's Hubei province…up to 200 workers from the Microsoft Xbox production line of Foxconn (part of Hon Hai)…a major supplier of Apple…staged a strike...[and] threatened to kill themselves…In 2010…18 of their colleagues…did attempt suicide; 14 died. Some employees and labour organisations blamed a combination of factors for the workers' deaths: low wages, long working hours – sometimes up to 16 hours a day – and inhuman treatment...[However,] migrant workers [are] beginning to resist…This year, there has been a wave of factory revolts across six provinces in China…in southern China's Guangdong province…villagers staged well-organised protests…The intensive standoff ended…when top provincial leaders agreed to some of their demands...I hope China's leaders will really listen to the farmers, opening up more channels for them to express their grievances, and allowing some kind of independent labour union or at least a collective bargaining mechanism to ease the conflicts. And ultimately, they'll have to grant the same rights to those who make gadgets...[also refers to Honda]

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Article
27 September 2011

Foxconn says fire at China plant extinguished

Author: Reuters

A fire at a plant belonging to Apple...supplier Foxconn Group in Shandong, eastern China, has been extinguished without casualties and there will be no impact on operations, said a spokesman for group's listed entity Hon Hai Precision Industry...Electrical cables on a building rooftop caught fire on Tuesday morning, the spokesman said, adding that any damage would be covered by insurance. He did not say what was produced at the plant, in the city of Yantai. Officials at the technology park in which the plant is situated were unavailable for comment...Foxconn Group has struggled under a host of problems, including rising costs, labour unrest and a string of worker suicides at its sprawling production facilities in China.

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Article
19 September 2011

[video] Activist Debby Chan takes on one of the world's favourite brands in her fight for workers' rights

Author: James Leong and Lynn Lee on Al Jazeera

Apple is one of the coolest brands on the planet but it is currently under the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. A spate of suicides at one of its main suppliers, Foxconn [part of Hon Hai], has led to allegations of labour rights abuses in its Chinese factories…This film follows Debby Chan as she works to gather evidence against Foxconn and Apple, often at great risk to herself. Foxconn claims it is compliant with local regulations but has agreed to pay compensation to victims of an explosion in one of its factories and is working with mental health experts to prevent further suicides among its workforce. Apple declines to respond.

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Article
20 May 2011

Two die in explosion at Foxconn iPad plant [China]

Author: CNET news [USA]

An explosion at a Foxconn [part of Hon Hai] factory near Chengdu, China, has killed at least two people and injured 16, according to a statement sent from the company, which reportedly manufactures Apple iPads at the site… Here's the full statement, which Foxconn sent to CNET..."...[T]he cause of this explosion is being investigated by local police officials. Foxconn is cooperating fully with that investigation...The safety of our employees is our highest priority and we will do whatever is required to determine and address the cause of this tragic accident." Apple did not immediately return CNET's request for comment, but it did provide the following statement to AllThingsD. "We are deeply saddened by the tragedy at Foxconn's plant in Chengdu, and our hearts go out to the victims and their families. We are working closely with Foxconn to understand what caused this terrible event."…Local government officials referred to the factory as Foxconn's "polishing plant" and little solid information is known about the cause of the explosion...the BBC reports that security guards told evacuees from the factory that the smoke coming from the facility was toxic…

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