Friday, December 02, 2011

The Bigger Picture Behind Apple's China Problem |


But othey don't. Suppliers are notorious for faking pay records and gaming the inspectors. And Apple's track record makes clear that conditions are not safe and just. 


Cook also boasts that Apple offers free continuing education programs at factories in China, saying that "more than 60,000 workers have enrolled in classes to learn business, entrepreneurial skills or English." But are they earning more money? Working fewer hours? Safer?


See the problem here? Apple and other companies are measuring their actions, and not their impact. There's a big difference between the two. It's reason why we don't know whether the people who make the iPad are better or worse off than those who make an HP printer or a Microsoft XBox.


"Companies report on their activities -- audits conducted, training delivered -- but don't tell us what impact that effort has achieved for workers," Dan says. "As a result, while companies are getting better at reporting on their activities, we don't have a meaningful way to compare one company to another." We'd know more if companies reported on the wages that workers are paid, the number of workplace injuries, turnover rates, environmental discharges and the like.