16 January 2012

iPhones and illegal working conditions

Yes, that title is "iPhones and illegal working conditions".

Most Americans are aware that iPhones are not manufactured in the United States; they are manufactured in China. Most electronics, and a whole lot of other products, are made in China.

I read an article today in the Washington Post about iPhones and the labor conditions that workers, as young as 12 years old, have to endure. So we rich Americans can have our little devices with all their apps and get online whenever we want to update our status on FB.

I don't have an iPhone currently, and after reading this article, I don't plan to ever buy one.

There are an abundance of social injustices in our world. Child labor is one of them. It's great that Americans are fortunate enough to live in a country that has seen fit to outlaw child labor (and with good reason). I find it extremely ironic though that American still support child labor through the sales of a plethora of household items. iPhones being one of them.

These children who help to make iPhones (usually working on a part of the product) are as young as twelve years old and work 12-16 hour days. According to the article, a Chinese working hour is 60 minutes. Read: no breaks. In the US, a minor that is working has to take a 15 minute break every four hours and have a one hour break for lunch every eight hours. Chinese minors are not as fortunate. And they only make about 70 cents an hour. You can click here for a list of articles from varying sites about Apple and the working conditions in the factories that make their products. Apparently 62% of factory workers building Apple products break the 60-hour work week.

The hypocrisy just makes me so angry. Now, if you own an iPhone and are reading this and know me personally, fear not, I will not go up to you and dump water on your iPhone. Here and now though, I want to encourage you to not buy any Apple products in the future. And to research before you buy other electronics. I know I'm going to.

Sound off: what do you think? How does this make you feel about your iPhone? Will you buy another one in the future?


Joy McMillan said...

It's astounding the stuff we don't know about the things we buy! I think we'd reconsider a whole hang of a lot if we were more informed. Thanks for sharing this!

The Barrow's said...

I talked to some friends who go on missions trips into China and it was interesting what the Chinese take on all of this was. They talked about how these jobs allow their families to eat... and that our ideas of labor and their's are totally different. They see these jobs as blessings - kind of crazy to us, but when you think about all the children being sold into sexual slavery because the family is destitute, it makes sense that even what we see as a tiny bit of money for a huge amount of work, would be a better alternative to them. WorldServe also talked about the prisoners forced to make Christmas lights and emphasized that boycotting was not the solution. I think the perspectives of people living in other countries is just SO different than ours, it's hard to grasp. Bottom line is that this world is a MESS without Jesus!