Foxconn: latest employee death not work related

Jun 04, 2010
In this Feb 24, 2010 file photo, a recruiter from Foxconn talks to job applicants outside the factory in Shenzhen in southern China's Guangdong province. Global manufacturers struggling with life-or-death pressures to control costs are finding that the legions of low-wage Chinese workers they rely on have limits. A strike at Honda Motor Co. and the official response to a spate of suicides at Foxconn Technology, a maker of electronics for industry giants such as Apple, Dell and Hewlett-Packard, suggests China's leaders are at least tacitly allowing workers to talk back. (AP Photo, File)

(AP) -- Taiwan's Foxconn Technology Group, which has been shaken by a spate of worker suicides in China this year, said Friday another employee had died but denied it was work-related.

The maker of iPhones, iPads and other for global corporations including Apple Inc. said the 28-year-old engineer died "a sudden death" last week at his home near Foxconn's Shenzhen plant in China's southern Guangdong province.

The cause of the death was being investigated and "we have found nothing to support any allegation that it was work-related," the company said in a statement.

Hong Kong's Ming Pao newspaper reported Wednesday that relatives claimed the engineer died of work stress, having worked 34 hours without a break shortly before his collapse.

The company announced Wednesday a 30 percent pay raise for workers to help create a better working environment where employees can reduce overtime work and have more time for leisure.

Labor activists accuse the company of having a rigid management style, an excessively fast and forced overwork, allegations that Foxconn denies.

Ten workers have killed themselves and three have attempted suicide at Foxconn's operations in southern China this year, involving mainly workers who jumped from buildings.

Chairman Terry Gou has promised to work harder to prevent more deaths.

Safety nets were being installed on buildings and more counselors were being hired. He also has said all employees were being divided into 50-member groups, whose members would watch for signs of emotional trouble within their group.

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