Yesterdya I post a video recording how Foxconn workers make an iPad, which is made by Rob Schmitz, the journalist who exposed Mike Daisey’s fabrications and exaggerations of Apple’s Chinese suppliers, was given an approval by Apple and Foxconn to get a tour in the factory after ABC’s Bill Weir’s visit. With Schmitz’s visit this time, he decided to go deep inside into some Foxconn workers’ life, and it is more about their impression of Foxconn and the reason why they choose Foxconn. So let's listen to the real voices from Foxconn workers:
1. Foxconn Worker — Chen Xiaomin
Some pool tables outside the factory
Before she went to Foxconn:
“Money earned at home is earned with sweat. When I was a school girl, my mother worked on the farm. She sold beans so that I could go to school. Every year, I’d carry a 20-pound bag of rice to school just so I’d have something to eat.”
After she went to Foxconn:
“I don’t like this job at all. You don’t learn anything. It’s useless and repetitive. When our supervisors put pressure on us, I feel like: We’re not machines. If we were machines, we could probably work as hard as they want us to, but we’re people.”
Although she doesn’t like her job, she will still choose to work in this factory. Why? Because her father is dying and she needs the money for her dad’s treatment. Despite, Chen said it’s the one of the best factories to work at in Shenzhen, at least Foxconn pays on time and won’t always cheat on on overtime pay like other factories do.
2. Foxconn Worker — Xiong Yefei
Her role is to clean iPad components with an alcohol solution and that fumes always make her feel sick. She couldn’t transfer to another position, even she’s now two months pregnant.
“A supervisor told me the fumes wouldn’t harm the baby, but I’d still like to be transferred to another part of the line. When I asked my supervisors, they said no. And now they’re making me work the night shift.”
In fact, there’re many other workers have some similar complaints to their supervisors.
3. Foxconn Worker — Luo Guofen
“They won’t even let you take a day off; it’s very annoying. You have to beg! Last year a bunch of us asked for a holiday before Chinese New Year. We pleaded for days, but it was rejected. I left anyway and got in a lot of trouble.”
Luo is definitely a hard-working man, who has installed Wi-Fi components in iPads every day in the past two years and making $378 a month, then these money were sent back to his home to help his brother through vocational school and to his parents. Last year, he sent roughly about $2,000 back home. But after all, Schmitz visited his home and got another story from Luo’s mother, who said:
To be honest, the money he sends home isn’t very much. He spends so much on living expenses in that big city he lives in. Most of the money for fixing our home came from our savings, not his.
The money that he sent back home to his parent is just for building an addition to their house. The place that Luo’s parents reside are famous of growing some of the best oranges in China. They can saved up to $10,000 for farming oranges and doing odd jobs in the off-season. By comparing to his son’s $2,000 in saving last year, it’s not much. Luo’s parents have already persuaded his son to come home instead, and his family business certainly could save more money, but he just have to work perhaps even harder than in Foxconn. Luo’s mother added:
Whenever he starts a job, he gives up halfway through. That’s why he never mastered any skills and that’s why he left to work in a factory. Being a factory worker is useless. They just do the same thing over and over! They don’t make much, and they don’t save anything. It’s time he came home.