foxconn production

An Apple supplier has once gain come under scrutiny for labor violations. Both Green America and China Labor Watch are reporting that Catcher, who is responsible for making iPad and MacBook casings for the company, is endangering and exploiting its workers.

At its factory in Suqian, China, Catcher is accused of failing to provide adequate protective equipment for employees handling toxic materials, and various other safety violations. The manufacturer is also charged with forcing overtime: 10+ hours per day, 6 days a week.

“CLW’s investigation exposed more than 20 legal and ethical violations at the Catcher factory,” said Kevin Slaten of China Labor Watch. Green America’s Elizabeth O’Connell says “the health and safety violations found in this factory two years in a row are startling.”

Apple, along with several other consumer electronics giants, has long taken criticism over labor conditions in the Asian supply chain. In recent years, it’s managed to drastically reduce issues at major supply partners, but some believe it’s time to move further down the line.

The news comes as Apple prepares to unveil this year’s new iPhone, which is expected to sell in record numbers. Manufacturing heavyweights Foxconn and Pegatron, who actually assemble the handsets, have reportedly hired 100,000+ new workers to help fulfill orders.

[CLW via NYT]