New documents show Lens Technology, which makes iPhone glass is using forced labor in China, according to The Washington Post.
The documents, discovered by the Tech Transparency Project and shared exclusively with The Washington Post, detail how thousands of Uighur workers from the predominantly Muslim region of Xinjiang were sent to work for Lens Technology. (Lens Technology also supplies Amazon and Tesla.)
The company is just one company (others include Wistron, O-Film, and BOE) connected to Apple’s supply chain that have now been linked to alleged forced labor from the Xinjiang region, according to human rights groups. However, The Post notes that “Lens Technology stands out from other Apple component suppliers because of its high-profile founder and long, well-documented history going back to the early days of the iPhone.”
Apple spokesman Josh Rosenstock told The Post that the company has confirmed that Lens Technology has NOT received any labor transfers of Uighur workers from Xinjiang. He said Apple earlier this year ensured that none of its other suppliers are using Uighur labor transferred from Xinjiang.
“Apple has zero tolerance for forced labor,” Rosenstock said. “Looking for the presence of forced labor is part of every supplier assessment we conduct, including surprise audits. These protections apply across the supply chain, regardless of a person’s job or location. Any violation of our policies has immediate consequences, including possible business termination. As always, our focus is on making sure everyone is treated with dignity and respect, and we will continue doing all we can to protect workers in our supply chain.”
Lens Technology engages in the research, development, production, and sale of touch panel cover glass. Its products include mobile phone screens, tablet personal computer screens, window protective glass, touch screen monomer, touch screen modules, camera modules, fingerprint modules, camera lenses, ceramic panels, and metal accessories. The company was founded by Qun Fei Zhou in 2003 and is headquartered in Changsha, China.