Mass Suicide Threat at Foxconn Xbox 360 Manufacturing Plant

11 January, 2012 - 6:25 pm by

Over 300 Xbox 360 manufacturing workers at Foxconn threatened to commit mass suicide from the roof of their workplace before being talked down by the mayor of local Chinese town Wuhan. The incident followed the electronic company Foxconn’s refusal to grant workers a pay-rise early in the new year, before claiming employees would receive compensation if they left their jobs. Many quit, but no compensation was forthcoming. The rooftop drama then ensued.

Foxconn is a vast corporation (also responsible for the manufacturing of electronics goods for Sony, Nintendo, Dell, Nokia and Apple), yet its public face is increasingly troubled by labour issues and workforce suicides. Previously, a series of suicides at its city-sized plants led many of Foxconn’s affiliated companies, and the Chinese government, to launch investigations into its working practices. The risk of self-harm is so great that many of Foxconn’s buildings now have safety nets built around them.

Following the reported mass suicide threat, Microsoft issued the following response: “Microsoft takes working conditions in the factories that manufacture its products very seriously, and we are currently investigating this issue.”

“We have a stringent Vendor Code of Conduct that spells out our expectations, and we monitor working conditions closely on an ongoing basis and address issues as they emerge. Microsoft is committed to the fair treatment and safety of workers employed by our vendors, and to ensuring conformance with Microsoft policy.”