Apple’s supplier factory Foxconn asking school-age interns to work 11 hours a day
Six students reported that Foxconn, Apple’s contractor manufacturing the devices in Zhengzhou, northern China’s Henan Province, had asked them to work overtime illegally for assembling iPhone X.
According to the Financial Times, students from Zhengzhou Urban Rail Transit School attend a three-month placement at Foxconn for a required course for graduation. Reported 3,000 students, aged from 17 to 19, were in the project and asked to work over 10 hours per day in the factory.
One student surnamed Yang, among the six students, said her major is in railway transportation, but the school required her to gain working experience in a manufactory assembly line. She had to assemble over 1,200 iPhone cameras per day, which is completely irrelevant to her study.
Foxconn confirmed the situation on Wednesday, claiming all students voluntarily worked here and they were properly compensated for the overtime hours. Foxconn has a long history of cooperating with local governments and colleges in China and offering permanent placement opportunities.
In the contract between Apple and Foxconn, each employee should not work over 60 hours per week. And student labor or summer interns should be limited to 40 hours a week.
Apple claims it has found interns working overtime in Foxconn’s Zhengzhou factory. The circumstances should not have been permitted and Apple has taken immediate action to stop it.
"We’ve confirmed the students worked voluntarily, were compensated and provided benefits, but they should not have been allowed to work overtime," said in a statement released by Apple.
An anonymous staff from Foxconn told the Guancha.com that student labor is highly recruited from August to December. The number of workers can be extended from 100,000 to 300,000, producing 20,000 iPhones per day.
This is not the first time that Foxconn has been reported in a labor related scandal. In October 2013, northern Shanxi Province's department of education condemned Foxconn for asking college students working overtime.
In July 2017, all interns in Foxconn’s factory in Yantai, east China’s Shandong Province, were called back by local education department, as these interns are from northeastern Shenyang Urban Construction University and they were forced to work for the factory