Apple supplier stops students' illegal overtime at iPhone X factory

Delia Watkins
November 24, 2017

"Underage workers often enter the factories as student "interns" required to work at the factories by vocational schools".

The report cited only six workers out of the thousands working at the facility.

Apple's main supplier in China used student workers illegally to manufacture parts for the newly launched iPhone X, the Financial Times reported Tuesday. They have acknowledged that some cases of student interns working overtime do exist and they're looking into measures to ensure that this doesn't happen again.

Foxconn admitted to breaking the law by allowing students to work overtime. The interns also constitute "a very small percentage of the workforce", the representative said.

Apple is dedicated to ensuring everyone in our supply chain is treated with the dignity and respect they deserve. We know our work is never done and we'll continue to do all we can to make a positive impact and protect workers in our supply chain.

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Last week a Financial Times story detailed the life of six interns who were forced to work 11 hours per day at an iPhone X assembly plant in Henan Province, China. The students, aged 17 to 19, said that they were being "forced" to complete the three-month internship as a requirement for graduation. She added: "The work has nothing to do with our studies".

Apple's statement said that the company had sent staff to the site to address the violations.

Apple and Foxconn have been accused of poor labour practices in the past, but the US technology giant has been trying to get a grip of such issues, releasing annual reviews of the iPhone supply chain. According to those reports, the company and its production partners were struggling to keep up with their shipment goals on the phone.

This is not the first time Apple is under fire for labor conditions in its Chinese suppliers.

The BBC reports that Foxconn responded as soon as the facts were revealed. It is simply the abuse of working hours by making them work overtime that is breaking the law.

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