In 2009, a number of workers at United Win in Suzhou (China) suffered the effects of hexane poisoning. United Win is a subsidiary of the Taiwanese electronics company Wintek Corporation and a supplier to Apple. Hexane is used in the production of the Apple iphone, for instance. Despite the international outcry about the situation of the affected workers, Wintek and Apple are slow to take adequate steps. Hong Kong based labour rights group SACOM is petitioning upon United Win/Wintek and Apple to take responsibility for the poisoned workers.
Hong Kong based labour rights group SACOM has launched a petition, calling upon Wintek and Apple to take responsibility for the poisoned workers at United Win, the Wintek subsidiary
Demands as formulated
in the petition read as follows:
- United Win to immediately offer check-ups and follow-up treatments to the workers in hospitals that recognized and trusted by the workers. Meanwhile, United Win should pay workers basic salaries, and sufficient allowance for hospitalization and food. For the workers who have resumed work in United Win, Apple and United Win must ensure decent wage and sufficient rest time;
- Apple to monitor and pay for the rectification of United Win. Apple should not cut the order in United Win and should provide workers with suitable and effective protective measures and equipments;
- Apple to monitor United Win to stop using dispatch workers, and facilitate United Win to convert the dispatch workers into regular workers by signing contract with United Win according to the China labour Law and China Labour Contract Law;
- Apple to raise its unit price, so that United Win could pay the workers with decent living wage. For now, workers are forced to work overtime 18 hours every week, which is violating the requirement of the China Labour Law that overtime work should be limited to 36 hours a mouth.
So far the petition has been signed by 174 people.