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  • Vishal Narayan

Foxconn iPhone plant accused of rejecting married women for jobs; Centre asks TN govt to follow law



The Centre has asked Tamil Nadu to submit a report addressing the allegations that Taiwanese firm Foxconn rejected married women for jobs at its iPhone assembly facility near Chennai, according to reports.


News agency Reuters said the Ministry of Labour in a statement on June 26 cited the Equal Remuneration Act of 1976 and said that it "clearly stipulates that no discrimination be made while recruiting men and women workers" and asked the Tamil Nadu government to enforce the law if there's any breach.


"Section 5 of the Equal Remuneration Act 1976 clearly stipulates that no discrimination is to be made while recruiting men and women workers. As the state government is the appropriate authority for the enforcement and administration of the provisions of this Act, the report has been sought from it," the ministry said.


The allegations were first made in a news report by Reuters, which in an investigative piece spoke to several women who claimed they were turned down by Foxconn's Sriperumbudur facility for a job because they were married.  


Apple in a statement denied any such thing happening at Foxconn.


"When concerns about hiring practices were first raised in 2022, we immediately took action and worked with our supplier to conduct monthly audits to identify issues and ensure that our high standards are upheld. All of our suppliers in India hire married women, including Foxconn," the US-based firm said in a statement.


Foxconn too said it "vigorously refutes allegations of employment discrimination based on marital status, gender, religion or any other form." 


It said that in its latest round of hiring, almost 25 per cent of the women were married. 


Some sources told PTI that Foxconn had reached out to the government to clarify its stance.


According to these sources, the Foxconn factory in Sriperumbudur currently has about 70 per cent women and 30 per cent men, with the total workforce touching 45,000 workers during peak periods.


Reuters in its article cited a former Foxconn India HR personnel, who claimed the company typically doesn’t hire married women because of "cultural issues" and societal pressures.


The company, S Paul said, has a view that there were many issues post-marriage, such as women "have babies after marriage."


Image Source: Unsplash



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