Tech plant slammed in labour report
Tech giant Amazon and manufacturer Foxconn have been criticised over harsh working conditions at a plant in China.
The factory that makes Amazon’s Echo Dot smart speaker and Kindle e-reader is the subject of a report by New York-based China Labor Watch.
It alleges workers face excessive hours, low wages, inadequate training and an over-reliance on temporary ‘dispatch’ workers in violation of Chinese law at the Hengyang Foxconn plant in Hunan province.
Foxconn, which also makes Apple iPhones, has been under fire in the past due to a high rate of suicide among its nearly 1 million workers.
China Labor Watch says that about 40 per cent of workers at the plant are dispatch workers, well above the 10 per cent limit under Chinese law.
Dispatch workers are paid the same for regular and overtime hours – about 14.5 yuan (US$2.26) per hour, the report said.
The labour rights group says workers put in more than 100 overtime hours per month during peak season, sometimes working for 14 consecutive days.
Amazon says its own audits have found the use of dispatch workers and excessive overtime to be “issues of concern”.
“We immediately requested a corrective action plan from Foxconn,” Amazon said in a statement.
Foxconn issued a statement saying it “works hard to comply with all relevant laws and regulations”, and “if infractions are identified, we work to immediately rectify them”.