Apple: China suppliers treat iPad workers even worse than Foxconn

A four-month investigation in which NY-based China Labor Watch interviewed 620 workers at Apple Inc. suppliers Toyo Precision, BYD Electronic, Quanta Computer, Wintek and Jabil Circuit, among others, "showed workers work up to 180 hours of overtime a month during peak periods, exceeding the legal limit of 36 hours per month ... Some factories also omit medical insurance as required by the law... Workers are exposed to hazardous conditions," Bloomberg reports here.

Summary and link to China Labor Watch's 132-page report here.

"Apple and its suppliers such as Taiwanese tycoon Terry Gou's Foxconn Technology Group have been the target of labor rights groups, which say the world's most valuable technology company are making iPhones and iPads in massive sweat shops.

"From our investigations, we found that the labor rights violations at Foxconn also exist in virtually all other Apple supplier factories, and in many cases, are actually significantly more dire than at Foxconn," where a series of worker suicides led to probes that exposed low pay, long hours and strict management control on workers' lives, China Labor Watch said.

"As part of our ongoing supplier responsibility program, our team has conducted thorough audits at every facility in China Labor Watch's report... In some places, our auditors found issues similar to those described by China Labor Watch, including overtime violations," Kristin Huguet, an Apple spokeswoman, told Bloomberg. The news service had no immediate comment from the China contractors.