Foxconn says investigating labor conditions at China factory used for Amazon


In a press statement, Amazon said it audited the Hengyang factory most recently in March 2018 and asked them to address "issues of concern" related to dispatch workers and overtime.

China Labor Watch's investigator worked on the factory's night shift, brushing dust off Alexa Echo Dot speakers from 8 p.m. until the small hours of the morning.

The New York-based China Labor Watch released a report at the weekend following a nine-month investigation of working conditions at a factory in the city of Hengyang owned by Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., the company known as Foxconn, which manufactures products for Amazon. He did not respond to a request for further details. This is not compliant with Chinese laws, which only allow companies to hire up to 10 percent of its workforce and require at least 24 hours of safety training.

An Amazon spokesman said: "Amazon takes reported violations of our Supplier Code of Conduct extremely seriously".

Though regular workers were better compensated in terms of wages and benefits, China Labor Watch says both groups were subjected to long hours and low wages, with workers putting in more than 100 overtime hours during peak season, even though the legal limit is 36 hours, and some working consecutively for 14 days.

"We immediately requested a corrective action plan from Foxconn Hengyang detailing their plan to remediate the issues identified and we are conducting regular assessments to monitor for implementation and compliance with our supplier code of conduct".

Foxconn, a consumer electronics manufacturer, said it's "aware" of the report and is conducting a "full investigation".

According to the report, workers tasked with putting together Amazon Echo devices and Kindle tablets were required to work more than 100 hours of monthly overtime during peak season - almost three times the 36 hours per month limit stated in Chinese labour law. Additionally, the factory relied on dispatch, or temporary workers, instead of full-time employees. "We are committed to ensuring that these issues are resolved".

"Such remuneration includes basic wages, payments for any overtime work, housing and other allowances, and other financial incentives and bonuses", the company said.

A watchdog group is calling on improve conditions for factory workers in China who make Echo speakers and Kindle e-readers, renewing criticisms that CEO Jeff Bezos became the world's wealthiest man on the backs of low-paid laborers.

It was also found that overtime at the factory was being paid at a standard hourly rate, rather than the legally required time-and-a-half.

The report also found workers did not receive adequate safety training and that factory dorm rooms did not adhere to fire safety guidelines.



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