According to videos, Foxconn employees fight with security personnel wearing hazmat suits about pay, COVID restrictions, and inadequate food rations.
|Foxconn iPhone Factory in China|
In a demonstration that started Tuesday night and continued into Wednesday, workers at Apple's largest iPhone plant in China engaged in physical altercations with police and security personnel. Unrest occurred on the campus in Zhengzou as a result of rising tensions over restrictions meant to contain an outbreak of COVID-19.
In videos sent to Bloomberg by witnesses, more than 100 workers at the Foxconn plant can be seen leaving their dorms and shoving past undermanned security personnel. In one video, individuals in what appeared to be white haz-mat suits appeared to strike a man on the ground with sticks. In another, individuals broke through barricades while onlookers chanted, "Fight, fight!"
According to a witness, the protest broke out overnight over unpaid salaries and concerns about an infectious epidemic at the company. According to the Associated Press, thousands of workers had gathered outside the dormitories by Wednesday morning to engage in combat with the plant's security personnel. Before cops could calm things down, a number of workers were hurt in the brawl.
The majority of Apple's iPhones are produced by Foxconn, which has over 200,000 employees and ships about 70% of all iPhones worldwide.
Violence at the Zhengzhou factory since the latest lockdown started in October serves as a stark reminder of the rising tension there. Due to dissatisfaction with how the outbreak was handled and inadequate food rations, a large number of employees have left the plant in recent weeks.
Foxconn refuted claims made in a statement on its website that workers who tested positive for COVID-19 had been residing in the company's on-site housing. In addition, the business asserted that it has "always fulfilled allowance" in terms of fulfilling employee contracts. Representatives from Apple and Foxconn did not immediately reply to a request for comment.