Apple’s Workers Union is holding a “Day of Solidarity” in front of Apple stores to show support for workers in France and at the Foxconn plant in China. The union is holding protests at stores of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) throughout the world, including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Germany, France, Japan, and China- all the same countries that debut the iPhone 5 on Friday.
The workers union is calling for a better company that treats their employees right. The union is backing up a better company in France, which pays their employees more money, as well as give them access to cleaner water. At one of the stores in Paris, two different groups raised their voices during a protest early on Friday. The Solidaires Unitaires Democratiques requested better benefits, and Bizcuss(former Apple retailer) complained about Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s treatment of their employees.
According to CNET, Laurent Degousee (secretary from SUD) said their union is asking for is rest breaks for employees, drinking water, and vouchers for meals, as they claim that eating in Paris is too expensive. They also want a 13th month of pay at the end of every year, which would be like a bonus of about eight percent for every single employee. It’s important to note that restaurant vouchers and extra months of pay are considered the standard in France.
At press time, the French union had garnered an agreement from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to provide restaurant vouchers.
The primary goals for this union are to generally improve the working conditions and offer more benefits for employees at Foxconn and other factories around the world. While this union protest day probably should have happened a long time ago, I think that it’s better late than never. It’s good that some progress is being made, even if it’s only in France.