Labor protestors plan demonstrations for iPad launch

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014


Protestors looking to steal a bit of Apple's iPad launch day thunder are preparing to hold demonstrations at various Apple Store locations on Friday in hopes of spreading awareness about the labor conditions in the Chinese factories making the device.



Instead of asking for broad third-party supplier labor reforms, investigations, and "an ethical iPhone, Change.org campaigners will take to Apple retail outlets on Friday in for Apple to build "an ethical iPad," reports GigaOM.



The protestors, lead by organizer Mark Shields, will take advantage of the hype surrounding the new iPad's launch and hold multi-store demonstrations when retail locations open at 8 a.m. in Washington, D.C., New York City and San Francisco.



Despite Apple's continuing efforts toward bettering labor conditions in its contracted factories in China, Shields says that more can be done.



“It’s great to see Apple taking important steps like the factory audit this month, and pay raises for the factory workers,” Shields said. “But Apple hasn’t crossed the finish line yet. New product releases, like the iPad 3 this week, have typically been the most dangerous for workers because of the incredible pressure they are under to meet release production deadlines.”



Shields' online petition asking for the protection of Chinese factory workers has gathered over 251,000 signatures, and has sparked a media blitz regarding the conditions under which Apple products are made. The movement first gained momentum when a pair of New York Times reports investigated major Chinese electronics builder Foxconn, which is a major Apple contractor, over alleged worker abuse.





Mark Shields (left) speaking with reporters outside an Apple Store over labor concerns. | Source: The Washington Post







Despite Foxconn's impressive client list of electronic heavyweights that include Microsoft, HP and Sony, the burden of guilt has been placed squarely on Apple by Change.org and SumOfUs.org.



In response to the mounting criticism, Apple asked the Fair Labor Association to conduct an inspection of its third-party suppliers in Asia. Although the FLA noted that Foxconn's factories were "first class," the auditors did find that many issues needed to be resolved. Workers at the factory later claimed that Foxconn hid underage workers from inspectors in order to avoid scrutiny.



In Apple's annual supplier code of conduct, employees may be aged 16 to 18 years old if they can legally work, though special restrictions limit the type and amount of work they perform.



Most recently, it was reported that Apple allegedly conducted an inspection of an iPad factory run by Chinese company Pegatron immediately before a blast occurred that injured 61 people. The claim brings into question whether Apple's audits are effective in stopping workplace accidents.



The planned Friday protests follow a series of demonstrations in February, though the high turnout for the iPad launch is expected to bring a larger media presence for Change.org to exploit.



[ View article on AppleInsider ]

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 84
    jason98jason98 Posts: 768member
    Wonder who sponsors them. Is it Googorola?
  • Reply 2 of 84
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    Nothing is forcing these Chinese workers to keep their jobs. They are allowed to take whatever job they are qualified for. Maybe these protestors should visit the factories where the workers work on dirt floors with no food breaks to make the cheap crap you buy at Walmart. Where's the outrage over that?
  • Reply 3 of 84
    19841984 Posts: 955member
    I keep forgetting that Apple has the only products that are made in China.
  • Reply 4 of 84
    bdkennedy1bdkennedy1 Posts: 1,459member
    If that had a Like button I would click it.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by 1984 View Post


    I keep forgetting that Apple has the only products that are made in China.



  • Reply 5 of 84
    idiots.
  • Reply 6 of 84
    When you are as big as Apple you are going to be used for this purpose. And Apple indeed needs to maintain public trust, so I think so far they have been making all the right moves. But this is here to stay.
  • Reply 7 of 84
    What more do these people want? Apple has already gone above and beyond.
  • Reply 8 of 84
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    That guy is wearing a nice coat and scarf that probably cost more than a month wages for the Chinese workers who made it.
  • Reply 9 of 84
    robin huberrobin huber Posts: 3,689member
    Why not go after the source, the government of China? If you really want to right wrongs, start there. Oh, that's right, they're too mean and inscrutible. That job is too h-a-a-a-r-r-r-d. Easier to go after the low hanging fruit and make Apple pay for the wrongs of others.
  • Reply 10 of 84
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Protestors looking to steal a bit of Apple's iPad launch day thunder are preparing to hold demonstrations at various Apple Store locations on Friday in hopes of spreading awareness about the labor conditions in the Chinese factories making the device.




    Good for them. Nothing will change unless proper publicity is given to the situation.



    I hope that they expand their efforts to the other electronics giants as well.
  • Reply 11 of 84
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,505member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    That guy is wearing a nice coat and scarf that probably cost more than a month wages for the Chinese workers who made it.



    Exactly. Meanwhile anyone betting the date AAPL passes GOOG share price? Meaningless I know but entertaining ...
  • Reply 12 of 84
    justflybobjustflybob Posts: 1,337member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    Exactly. Meanwhile anyone betting the date AAPL passes GOOG share price? Meaningless I know but entertaining ...



    Sort of like hanging around a Walmart at midnight, seeing who might actually show up to buy an iPad there.



    Because, you know, the Apple products that Walmart sells are the only items made in China!
  • Reply 13 of 84
    donw35donw35 Posts: 30member
    get a job hippie
  • Reply 14 of 84
    neillwdneillwd Posts: 32member
    You do realize that these workers without jobs provided by our manufacturing orders would be expelled from the cities and have to go back to living in their stone cave's and burning dung for fuel.
  • Reply 15 of 84
    Actually, this guy should be protesting over at Foxconn's headquarters. Oh wait, Apple is an easier target, let's guilt trip them into fixing the alleged problems.
  • Reply 16 of 84
    So many stories from these groups.



    Also see conflicting articles such as this one that came out today on The Street:



    http://www.thestreet.com/_yahoo/stor...hat-wasnt.html
  • Reply 17 of 84
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by neillwd View Post


    You do realize that these workers without jobs provided by our manufacturing orders would be expelled from the cities and have to go back to living in their stone cave's and burning dung for fuel.



    Is that the only alternative to better working conditions?
  • Reply 18 of 84
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by 1984 View Post


    I keep forgetting that Apple has the only products that are made in China.



    Wal-Mart agrees. Apple is alone in being evil supporters of Chinese manufacturing.
  • Reply 19 of 84
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    What a bunch of ignorant morons.



    What's the difference between these lunatics and the Westboro Church protesters? Not much I'd say. They're both shameless publicity whores and delusional radicals who go around spreading their extremely offensive and braindead ideas.



    Hopefully the police will come and arrest them for being a public nuisance, disturbing the peace and for holding an illegal protest if they lack all of the necessary permits. Luckily for them, I won't be waiting in any Apple store line tomorrow, because I don't take too kindly to any dipshits.
  • Reply 20 of 84
    sennensennen Posts: 1,470member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by I am a Zither Zather Zuzz View Post


    Is that the only alternative to better working conditions?



    They actually have better working conditions than the rest of the manufacturing sector in China.
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