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Mistreated Foxconn Brazil Workers Threaten Strike 201

An anonymous reader writes "More bad news comes from Apple's iDevice manufacturing partner Foxconn that is sure to ruffle the feathers of Apple fans. From the story: 'Factory workers at a Foxconn plant in Jundiaí, Brazil are complaining of overcrowded buses, poor food and a lack of water and have threatened to strike unless the issues are resolved by May 3. According to a report by Brazil's Tech Guru (Google Translation), over 2,500 Foxconn employees have complained about conditions at the factory. Workers reportedly met last Monday to raise the concerns and have given the company 10 days to address them.'"
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Mistreated Foxconn Brazil Workers Threaten Strike

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 29, 2012 @11:16AM (#39837621)

    "Apple, and Dell, and Samsung, and Amazon, and Tosiba, and .... (insert evert other company producing consumer electronics here) ...partner Foxconn"

    Guess only Apple shod be accountable or something?

  • Re:Translation (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 29, 2012 @11:19AM (#39837641)

    Someone is wanting more bribes

    Actual work conditions are irrelevant, as long as union leadership is compensated accordingly

    That might be part of it, but labor laws in Brazil are much more strict than in most other places in the world. It is pretty common to hear people, especially in blue-collar jobs, to publicly complain about working conditions to pressure the companies to follow the law.

    The working conditions there are certainly not even close to what you would see in China, but that doesn't mean this is just about bribery.

  • by TWX ( 665546 ) on Sunday April 29, 2012 @11:30AM (#39837701)
    This is the kind of thing that I think needs to make the news, the differences between workers' rights in different countries, especially as there are more pushes to reduce workers' rights in the United States. I'm gathering that Brazil is one nation that has gone through a similar process that the US has, with a labor movement that secured legal rights for workers. Obviously China is still figuring that out, and I am not surprised when Chinese companies run afoul of labor laws in other countries when they take production overseas, as they've never been forced to reform at home like these other countries require.

    The more reforms China forces on their companies the more expensive those goods become, and the less desirable it is to send manufacturing there. It's a race to the bottom only retarded by workers everywhere forcing conditions to change.
  • by houghi ( 78078 ) on Sunday April 29, 2012 @11:53AM (#39837835)

    This is the kind of thing that I think needs to make the news, the differences between workers' rights in different countries

    I will go first. Belgium (Minimal rights for an office employee):
    20+ days payed holidays (I have 35)
    Medical benefits
    Social security in case of unemployment
    38 working hours per week
    Choice of at least 3 unions (Although this is not a must and nobody will ask)
    Reasonable privacy laws (e.g. No camera pointed to working people)
    No firering when you told you are pregnant
    No cubicles, but rather human interaction
    Several laws that will favor the employee
    Reduction on transportation (often 100% on public transportation)
    Food checks (Often, not always. Between 5 and 7 EUR per working day)
    Best beer in the world (OK, not work related, but still: this is Belgium.)

  • Re:Translation (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Lisandro ( 799651 ) on Sunday April 29, 2012 @12:16PM (#39837953)

    To get the job, you must be a member of the union. If you are not, then you must join immediately. There is only one union that represents people in your position. Only employees can be union officials, and anyone who gets elected without being open to bribes finds that they no longer have a job and must therefore resign. You must accept the deal negotiated between the company and their, sorry, your representative or you lose your job.

    You'd be surprised. I've traveled a lot lately, and i find it to work this way in most of the world. As a closer example: i live in Argentina. Joining an union is a de facto requirement in order to get a job on several industries (transport, particularly trucking, metal, food... even general commerce).

  • by GIL_Dude ( 850471 ) on Sunday April 29, 2012 @03:07PM (#39838897) Homepage

    When they choose to do business with sweatshops to build their products, they are essentially telling us they don't care enough to dirty their hands with that manufacturing business. They don't want to think about the labor relations aspects. They just don't care that much.

    Well, to be fair they do care. They care a lot about their PR - the same as any other company. And it is a lot easier to say, "we audit these external contract companies twice a year and have given them x months to make changes" than it is to say, "oh, yeah, we treat our employees in China and Brazil like crap. You caught us.". It is much better PR to work with these contract companies than to have your own sweatshops.

Vitamin C deficiency is apauling.