Tim Cook: Apple is doing more to improve workers conditions than anyone else

As most of you know, Apple has been catching a lot of flack recently regarding the poor working conditions at some of its overseas manufacturing plants. Last week, protestors delivered a petition with over 250,000 electronic signatures to the company calling for a change.

Tim Cook has already commented on the situation, saying that Apple is doing more than any other company in the industry to improve the working conditions of the factories in its supply chains. And today, the CEO reiterated the point at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet Conference…

“The first thing that I would want everyone to know is that Apple takes working conditions very, very seriously. And we have for a very long time. Whether workers are in Europe, or in Asia, or the United States, we care about every worker. I’ve spent a lot of time in factories personally… Many of our top managers and executives visit our factories on a regular basis. And we have hundreds of employees that are based there full time. So we are very closely connected to the production process…

…In terms of problems we are working to fix, you can read the details on our website, but I would tell you that no one in our industry is doing more to improving working conditions than Apple. We are constantly auditing facilities, going deep into the supply chain, looking for problems, finding problems, and fixing problems. And we report everything, because we believe that transparency is so very important in this area.”

What Cook is saying is spot on. Apple has carved out a section of its website, named Supplier Responsibility, specifically for reports on factory audits. The company has also recently joined the Fair Labor Association, who will also be regularly checking in on Apple’s factories.

So what are Sony, Nintendo, Amazon, and Microsoft doing to change working conditions in China? They all use Foxconn to produce their products as well. Where are their petitions?