IT vendors’ profits “at cost of Chinese workers”

Chinese hardware providers and their corporate customers, which include some of the largest names in the IT world, have been slammed as part of an investigation into the Asian giant’s labour practices.

A four-month study by non-profit organisation Students and Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour singled out Taiwan’s Foxconn for its poor treatment of employees on the Chinese mainland.

Foxconn provides semiconductors for vendors including Hewlett-Packard, Dell and Apple. The report says that staff at Foxconn plants are prohibited from talking, laughing or stretching during working hours. Over the past year, 18 Foxconn employees have committed suicide.

“Electronic brands like Apple, Nokia, HP, Dell, Sony, Sony Ericsson and Motorola, which have placed orders with Foxconn, also bear indispensable responsibility in the tragedies,” the report reads. “All these brands are making huge profits at the cost of the workers. Likewise, we are consuming the blood and tears of the workers, a fact hidden from us by fancy advertisements.”

Peter Done

Peter Done is managing director of Peninsula Business Services, the personnel and employment law consultancy he set up having already built a successful betting shop business.

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