Perhaps the promises of higher pay and better conditions at Foxconn haven’t been much solace to its workers or someone just had an unfortunately timed accident: either way, another worker – this time a summer intern – has fallen out of a Foxconn dormitory and died.
On Tuesday, LCD maker Chimei Innolux Corp., a Foxconn subsidiary, confirmed that a 19-year-old intern surnamed Liu had died after falling out of the sixth story of the company’s dormitory. Liu had just been fired for failing to show up for several days, and the factory had been trying to arrange a trip for him back to his hometown.
If it can be considered a suicide (nobody is specifying yet), Liu would be anywhere from the 11th to the 17th, depending on how you count it. To rectify the situation, CEO Terry Gou has proposed and then finalized plans for a move to higher ground: Langfang in Hebei Province within the year.
But Caixin points out that “this policy has actually sidelined Foxconn’s real need to dramatically improve its out of date business model…” Namely, that using human workers to do everything machines do in the West or Japan, and then running off when there’s cheaper labor to be had is eventually going to leave Foxconn with nowhere else to go. Or as China CSR noted on Twitter, “Foxconn biz model is polar opposite of responsible. Exploit local conditions. get caught. move.”