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Foxconn Unions Are Strengthened At Apple's Request

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TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Taiwan-owned Foxconn Technology Group, a leading maker of Apple's iPhones and gadgets for other global brands, is widening the scope of union elections at its sprawling facilities in China.

The move, confirmed by the company Monday, follows a series of recommendations from an international panel requested by Apple to audit conditions for the 1.2 million workers in Foxconn's mainland factories.

Foxconn said it will deepen employees' involvement in union elections so the unions can more effectively represent their interests. It said it hopes this will impact labor standards throughout China.

Foxconn previously came under heavy scrutiny for labor policies that allegedly led a dozen workers to commit suicide. It has also faced increasing protests and strikes as Chinese workers become increasingly aware of labor rights.

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