Apple has cut off major supplier Pegatron from new contracts following the reveal of student labor violations at some of the Taiwanese manufacturer’s China-based facilities. Bloomberg reports that Apple found Pegatron to be falsifying paperwork in order to cover up violations of Apple’s code of conduct for suppliers.
Pegatron is one of Apple’s biggest supply chain partners, manufacturing various products including some of the newest iPhone 12 models. The company is now reportedly on probation, however, and won’t be able to win any new business from Apple until the matter has been resolved.
“We have a rigorous review and approval process for any student worker program, which ensures the intern’s work is related to their major and prohibits overtime or night shifts,” Apple said in a statement to Bloomberg, noting that Pegatron had fired the program’s manager. “Pegatron misclassified the student workers in their program and falsified paperwork to disguise violations of our Code, including allowing students to work nights and/or overtime and in some cases to perform work unrelated to their major.”
“Upon discovery of this non-compliant activity, we immediately took the student workers off production lines and worked with our customer and third-party experts to make appropriate arrangements for them to return to their homes or schools with proper compensation alongside all necessary support and care,” Pegatron’s own statement reads. At this point, though, it appears that Apple is yet to be convinced.
This is by no means the first time Pegatron’s student worker program has come under the spotlight. China Labor Watch issued a report in 2013 alleging cases of unpaid overtime and underpayment of student workers at a Pegatron factory in Shanghai.