FutureFive NZ - Workers allege mistreatment at iPad factories

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Workers allege mistreatment at iPad factories

Last May, seven workers at a Chinese iPad plant took their own lives - leading to an investigation into working conditions at the Foxconn factory all seven worked for. 

Last week, the Guardian published a follow-up on the working conditions at Foxconn's plants in Shenzhen and Chengdu and found not much - if anything - had improved.  

The article tells of forced military drills, public humiliation and overtime far in excess of the legal maximum. From the article:

"The dormitories where she and most others live offer little comfort. Up to 24 people can share one room and the rules are strict, even prohibiting the use of a kettle or a hairdryer. One worker who did was forced to write a confession letter: 'It is my fault. I will never blow my hair inside my room. I have done something wrong. I will never do it again.'"

After the spate of suicides, workers were asked to sign a document promising not to kill themselves and limiting their families' payouts to the legal minimum. 

Apple has a code of conduct that calls for respectful treatment of supplier employees, The Guardian, however, suggests Apple is aware that many fall short of upholding these standards. 

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