With so many companies recruiting outside factories to manufacture parts for their devices, we often hear about the working conditions at these factories. Samsung is something of an outlier in that it makes a lot of its part in-house, but there is still a small need for outside help, which means that the company isn’t immune to controversy when one of its suppliers is allegedly operating outside the rules. One of these suppliers, HTNS Shenzhen Co., was recently accused of hiring underage works, allegations that Samsung discussed this weekend in a release on Samsung Tomorrow.
Happily, it seems there was nothing to worry about, as a Samsung investigation revealed that this allegedly underage worker was actually of legal working age. Samsung says its investigation into the claims involved an interview with the employee in question, which China Labor Watch was present at. The employee claimed during the interview that she was over 18 years of age and apparently expressed confusion as to why the interview was taking place.
Samsung has also confirmed that two allegedly underage workers – neither of which work for HTNS Shenzhen now – were legal age when they hired in, so it would appear that things are good for now. Of course, this isn’t the first time we’ve seen companies investigate their suppliers and it certainly won’t be the last. Samsung has been pretty good and investigating these claims once they’ve been made, so it deserves a pat on the back in that respect.
Samsung definitely isn’t alone though. Many of the worlds biggest tech companies have had to deal with similar allegations in the past, including companies like Apple and Microsoft. Samsung says it will continue to watch its suppliers throughout 2013 using a third-party auditor, and if any are discovered to be employing underage workers, their contracts will be terminated.