Apple has allowed the Fair Labor Association (FLA) to investigate several of its facilities, including those run by Foxconn.
Apparently the fruity firm requested that the FLA conduct "special voluntary audits" as part of the investigation which is mainly focused on substantiating claims of poor working conditions as well as potentially hazardous environments.
While ex Apple CEO Steve Jobs was quoted several times discussing the cleanliness and many amenities of Apple production facilities, he was proved wrong several times by employees throughout 2010 and 2011, with some committing suicide and others dying as part of easily avoidable industrial accidents. Last month too, some 150 employees at a Foxconn facility threatened to throw themselves from the roof of the fabrication plan in protest over horrendous pay and lack of staff training.
The Telegraph has some quotes from Apple chief executive, Mr Tim Cook, who said: "We believe that workers everywhere have the right to a safe and fair work environment, which is why we've asked the FLA to independently assess the performance of our largest suppliers.
"The inspections now under way are unprecedented in the electronics industry, both in scale and scope, and we appreciate the FLA agreeing to take the unusual step of identifying the factories in their reports."
For this humble journo, this smacks of "see, every thing's fine," as opposed to actually investigating the problem. Companies like Apple are more than capable of identifying industrial issues, or listening to staff complaints. Getting an outside organisation to investigate and check for issues with the current system seems like a great way to pretend that all is well.
As part of the investigation, several thousand workers will be interviewed, with working as well as sleeping conditions scrutinised.