Sunday, December 15, 2013

Santa Claus in Marilyn Monroe's Pose

This sexy Santa Claus is seen in Taiyuan in China's Shanxi province striking the classic Marilyn Monroe pose. Cute.

China Labor Watch says this image is of exhausted workers sleeping at the Pegatron factory. Photo: China Labor Watch 

The Foxconn suicides are still fresh on my mind. And now another Taiwanese company, Pegatron is suspected of somehow being responsible for workers’ deaths. The case came to light when a young Chinese worker at the Shanghai plant named Shi Zhaokun checked into a hospital on October 09 and soon after, he was pronounced dead. Supposedly, of pneumonia. 

Pegatron insisted the workplace environment was not the cause of his illness. But a spokeswoman acknowledged that there were other young workers at the factory who had also died in the past few months. 

Labor rights activists say Pegatron has failed to explain at least five deaths. They say workers interviewed by China Labor Watch, a nonprofit group that monitors working conditions, have complained about long working hours and harsh working conditions at Pegatron, including some of the same pressures that in previous years led to safety problems at Foxconn Technology, Apple's biggest contract supplier in China. 

In his only month at the manufacturing plant that produces Apple's iPhone 5C, Shi worked nearly 280 hours, often 12 hours a day, six days a week. Although his identification papers said he was 20, Shi was in fact 15. 

In fact, in July, China Labor Watch released a report claiming that Pegatron was violating Chinese laws and Apple's own social responsibility code of conduct. Among other things, the group said that Pegatron was forcing employees to work unpaid overtime. 

The company tried to settle this particular case by paying Shi’s family compensation of about 90,000 renminbi (approximately $16,000), according to the boy’s uncle, Yang Sen. But on Tuesday, Yang insisted that the matter was still unresolved. He said something must have gone wrong at Pegatron. On September 04, he said, Shi passed a pre-employment physical and was declared healthy.

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