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Apple fires supplier after finding 74 underage workers
Geeks Hut has obtained a report which is about Apple’s auditing process, which describes Apple firing one of their suppliers due to 74 underage workers working at Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics Co., Ltd, one of Apple’s suppliers for their products.
“Our auditors were dismayed to discover 74 cases of workers under age 16—a core violation of our Code of Conduct. As a result, we terminated our business relationship with PZ,” Apple said in their Apple Supplier Responsibility 2013 Progress Report. “The agency had its business license suspended and was fined. The children were returned to their families, and PZ was required to pay expenses to facilitate their successful return. In addition, the company that subcontracted its work to PZ was prompted by our findings to audit its other subcontractors for underage labor violations—proving that one discovery can have far-reaching impact.”
Apple conducted 393 audits last year, which is a 72 increase compared to 2011.
“Workers everywhere should have the right to safe and ethical working conditions. They should also have access to educational opportunities to improve their lives,” Apple said.
Apple said that most underage labour was due to “third-party agents”, with the tech giant saying “In many of the cases of underage labor we’ve discovered, the culprit behind the violation was a third-party labor agent that willfully and illegally recruited young workers.” Apple is blaming Shenzhen Quanshun Human Resources Co., Ltd for supplying the children to Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics Co., Ltd, with Apple saying that this company was one of the regions largest labour agencies.
Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics Co., Ltd isn’t just Apple’s supplier, with Apple saying they are used by many other companies, in many different industries. Real Faith Pingzhou Electronics Co., Ltd, produces circuit board compoents for Apple, which they say are used by other companies too.
Apple have said that they alerted provincial governments about their findings and that the labour agency was fined and had their business license suspended. Apple said that “the children were returned to their families, and PZ was required to pay expenses to facilitate their successful return.”