Foxconn, the manufacturer responsible for assembling different products for companies like Apple and Microsoft, has admitted that it hired interns that were under China’s legal working age of 16. The company conducted an internal investigation at one of its facilities, and discovered that some of the interns were between 14 and 16 years of age.
Foxconn issued a statement saying that the practice was “not only a violation of China’s labor law, it is also a violation of Foxconn policy.” The company is taking “immediate steps” to return the underage interns to school. The company is “also carrying out a full investigation, in cooperation with the respective educational institutions, to determine how this happened” and are ensuring that something like this “can never happen again.”
According to China Labor Watch, the schools that the underage interns belonged to were sent to Foxconn, but the company failed to check IDs of the students. China Labor Watch says that the schools involved are primarily responsible, but Foxconn is also at fault for not checking the ages of the interns. However, Foxconn has taken full responsibility and apologized for what happened.
Interns at Foxconn are able to gain relevant industry experience while also earning the same compensation as the company’s full-time entry-level workers. Interns also have the opportunity to become full-time Foxconn workers after school should they prove their worthiness and hard work to the company.