Just two days ago, Apple announced the Fair Labor Association would be looking into conditions at their Foxconn facility, and the preliminary results are already coming in. It appears conditions at Foxconn are far better than at other manufacturing facilities, and while there weren’t any immediate conclusions, the picture is much better than many believed. FLA president Auret van Heerden said:
“The facilities are first-class; the physical conditions are way, way above average of the norm. I was very surprised when I walked onto the floor at Foxconn, how tranquil it is compared with a garment factory. So the problems are not the intensity and burnout and pressure-cooker environment you have in a garment factory. It’s more a function of monotony, of boredom, of alienation perhaps.”
This is only the beginning of a three week process, and there’s still plenty of opportunities for things to go awry. That said, in comparison to many other manufacturing jobs in China — especially the garment industry — Foxconn seems like a step above.