Welcome to America's Own Foxconn

The conditions at Foxconn, the world's largest electronics manufacturer in China, are deplorable and far beneath American standards for decency and work safety. Right?

Right?

After spending a short time as a temp worker in the shipping warehouse Amalgamated Product Giant Shipping Worldwide, Mother Jones' Mac McClelland found that conditions in the United States are similarly shocking. A sample comparison:

HOURS

China: The Foxconn employees work 12 hour shifts with two one hour breaks. 

America: The standard shift is 8 hours, but "working more than eight hours is mandatory," explains McClelland, who ends up working 12 hour days during peak season. During that day she gets two fifteen minute breaks, as well as a 29 minute and 59 second lunch break. McClelland often took these precious seconds for anxiety filled pee breaks, she explains.

We lose more time if we want to pee--and I do want to pee, and when amid the panic about the time constraints it occurs to me that I don't have my period I toss a fist victoriously into the air--between the actual peeing and the waiting in line to pee in the nearest one of the two bathrooms, which has eight stalls in the ladies' and I'm not sure how many in the men's and serves thousands of people a day. 

WAGES

China: After the most recent raise, our Foxconn workers get $285 per month, which comes out to about $10 per day. 

America: Though she got hired at "elevensomething dollars an hour" McClelland says she will make $60 in her 10.5 hour day, which comes out to about $5.71 an hour. That's about $1.50 dollars less than both the Federal and Mississippi minimum wages. Her plight isn't unique either, according to this stat she dug up: "The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that more than 15 percent of pickers, packers, movers, and unloaders are temps. They make $3 less an hour on average than permanent workers," she writes. 

Read the full story at The Atlantic Wire.


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