REPORT: Amazon Blasted Over China Echo Factory Conditions
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A watchdog group is calling on Amazon.com Inc. to 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.
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. It offers the first behind-the-scenes glimpse of how Amazon produces voice-activated speakers that cost as little as $40.
Bloomberg further reported:
The report, which paints a picture of low pay and intense working conditions, includes the following findings:
- Workers were required to work more than 100 hours of monthly overtime in violation of Chinese labor law that limits overtime to 36 hours a month
- The factory uses more “dispatch workers,” similar to temporary staff in the U.S., than are allowed by Chinese law
- Employees did not receive adequate safety training
- Workers are required to arrive at work stations 10 minutes before their shift begins and they are not compensated for this time
- Staff dormitories lack adequate fire-safety precautions such as fire extinguishers
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