Foxconn Workers Use Suicide Threats As Bargaining Tool. Again.

In China, workers' rights kind of suck! So when the folks who make your game consoles and electronics want to protest, they take to the roof and threaten to kill themselves. Lovely.

Earlier this month in Shenzhen, while the world was watching how their iPads really got made, a group of approximately 20 Foxconn laborers climbed to the roof. There were there to protest Foxconn's decision to move factories from Shenzhen to the country's interior. The workers wanted to be reassigned in Shenzhen or released from their contracts.

Labour costs are rising in China and to remain profitable, Foxconn wants to relocate its plants from big cities like Shenzhen to more rural locations, where wages are cheaper. Moreover, since many workers come from rural villages to work in urban factories, Foxconn can, more or less, bring the factories to them.

According to Chinese news reports (via M.I.C. Gadget), around 200 Foxconn workers did not want to leave Shenzhen. Foxconn was able to reassign 150 workers in Shenzhen. The rest were left without any work. And without work, they do not draw a salary.

Unable to get out of their contracts, 20 or so workers took to the roof for 26 hours in a suicide standoff. While the above photo shows far less, the whole thing echoed an incident from earlier this year when Foxconn workers on the Xbox 360 production line threatened to jump from the factory rooftops.

深圳富士康因迁厂发生纠纷员工楼顶对峙26小时 [CNTV via M.I.C. Gadget]


    Why is there a distinct sarcastic tone in this article? Exactly what about these protests is a laughing matter. Suicide threats should always be taken seriously and not derided.

    Well let them jump, and then there won't be anymore suicide standoffs. Everyone will know that they aren't a functional business model.

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