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Apple PR addresses Foxconn suicides

Apple has had a rough month. The company's next generation iPhone was leaked way ahead of schedule, spoiling the party for the smartphone's official early June announcement. Apple is notoriously secretive and protective of its unreleased products, so the early scoop understandably ruffled Steve Jobs' feathers to say the least.

And on a much more human level, Apple has been the topic of discussion with regards to the Foxconn suicides which seem to be happening quite frequently. Foxconn manufacturers the iMac, iPod touch, iPhone, and iPad for Apple. Nine workers have committed suicide in the past year (four in the past month) at Foxconn's Shenzen plant -- two others attempted suicide, but lived.

Apple has now issued a statement regarding the suicides to Bloomberg:

We’re in direct contact with Foxconn senior management and we believe they are taking this matter very seriously. A team from Apple is independently evaluating the steps they are taking to address these tragic events and we will continue our ongoing inspections of the facilities where our products are made. [Apple is] saddened and upset by the recent suicides at Foxconn.

HP, which also has some of its products manufactured at the Shenzen factory, added that it is investigating “the Foxconn practices that may be associated with these tragic events.”

An undercover reporter detailed the long working days, immense pressure put on employees to increase productivity, and how some workers drop tools on the floor just to get a few moments of rest without having to stand on their feet.

Foxconn CEO Guo Tai-ming maintains that his company doesn't run sweatshops, but he did concede that "it is difficult for us to handle such a huge production team."

The spotlight on Foxconn has now made it the target of hackers. Hackers recently defaced he company's human relations site with the following according to Shanghaiist:

Foxconn -- We're Hiring

Are you feeling down today? Do you feel like not living anymore? Do you want to know what it feels like to jump down from China's model suicide jumping facility? Foxconn provides you the perfect environment to jump. All the many reasons to jump here have ensured at least one jump per week. Comprehensive press coverage guaranteed to ensure your name travels ten thousand miles. What are you waiting for? Pick up your phone now and join Foxconn.

Be the kickass twelfth jumper. You can do it.

Hiring hotline: 514514514

By: Xiaokai

This isn't the first time that an Apple manufacturing partner has come under fire. Recently it was reported that Wintek was being sued for poisoning 44 employees with n-hexane. N-hexane is used at the assembly plant to clean the screens of iPhones, but is extremely hazardous to humans after prolonged exposure.



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By chrnochime on 5/26/2010 10:26:00 AM , Rating: 2
Interesting info about the CEO. Lost his first wife back in 2005, and he exclaimed "Why is God(or the equivalent in Taiwan religion) is unfair to me?", when he at the time had around 18 billion USD in assets(which I consider being pretty damn fair). Said CEO then turn around not 3 years later to marry a girl who's ~20 years younger than he is, with said wife giving birth to a daughter. In between the death of his first wife and second marriage, had rumored(and sighted) to have been with many different women.

BTW, he has two grown children, in addition the aforementioned newly born daughter.




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