(Reuters / Stringer Photo)
All right all you iPhone junkies, I hope you are happy. Your lust for new tech has caused some major problems for the Foxconn plant in China that makes the new iPhone 5. According to Foxnews 2,000(!!) employees apparently fed up with working conditions were involved in a large scale brawl:
“Foxconn Technology Group and police said the cause of the unrest Sunday night was under investigation, but it comes amid a series of violent protests by workers in areas throughout China over grievances about pay and working conditions. Foxconn and police said as many as 2,000 employees were involved and 40 people were reported injured.”
I have seen several reports about harsh working conditions, and bad treatment of workers, especially at this plant. And it looks like things broiled over when a confrontation between a worker and guard became violent.
“Foxconn, some supervisors, and security guards never respect us,” said the employee, who asked not to be identified by name. “We all have this anger toward them and they (the workers) wanted to destroy things to release this anger.”
Apple systems used to be made in the good ‘ol USA, but as the demand for product increased, and as the lust for higher profits kicked in, manufacturing was moved from US plants to China. Where it appears laborer rights are not quite the same as they are here with reports of forced overtime, wage issues and ill treatment of workers.
According to the article workers were being forced to work more than 60 hours per week at one point in what some called a militaristic atmosphere:
“Workers are expected to obey their manager at all times, not to question but simply to what they are told,” Crothall said. “That atmosphere is not conducive to a happy or contented workforce. It’s a very dehumanizing way of treating workers.”
According to a PCWorld article, workers were forced to work up to 80 hours per week leading up to the release of the iPad 3.
Maybe when Chinese workers demand equal pay and rights, American businessmen will return the work to American shores where it is desperately needed. And where workers are treated a lot more humane.