According to reports, employees were irate over meals, bonuses, and COVID concerns.
According to Bloomberg, there have been violent clashes at worker protests at Foxconn's largest iPhone production in Zhengzhou, China. Videos show numerous violent incidents as well as hundreds of workers demonstrating and confronting a management. Videos released on Weibo that Engadget Chinese saw claim that employees are dissatisfied with their reduced benefits and lengthier wait times for incentives.
One video depicts employees yelling "Maintain our rights! Maintain our rights! "another depicts a team of workers around a management in a conference room as they confront cops. In the latter, a person exclaims, "You are sending us to death," and another person adds, "I'm really afraid about this place, we all could be COVID positive."
In other footage, people in white suits are seen using sticks to strike someone, and workers are shown encircling and rocking a police car that is being used. In a number of films, employees lamented the lack of proper COVID protections and the uncertainty surrounding whether they would receive meals. Reuters and other news organizations, however, have not yet confirmed the veracity of some of the videos.
Foxconn has instituted rigorous "closed loop" quarantine regulations in response to the ongoing COVID-19 outbreaks, requiring personnel to work and live on-site, cut off from the outside world. A Hong Kong advocacy organization told Reuters that it is "now obvious that closed-loop production in Foxconn only helps in keeping COVID from spreading to the city, but does nothing (if not make it more worse) for the workers in the factory." According to other workers, thousands of workers may have left the factory campus, requiring Foxconn to provide bonuses and greater pay in order to retain staff.
Due to Foxconn's substantial reduction in iPhone production at the same factory last month due to COVID concerns, Apple was forced to postpone the shipment of the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max. With 200,000 employees, the company's Zhengzhou plant is the biggest iPhone manufacturing in the world and produces the gadgets at a rate of 70%.
The post first claimed that food shortages were the cause of the protests, but other documents later obtained by Engadget Chinese indicate that other issues, such as diminished perks and lengthier waiting periods for bonuses, were more likely to be at play. The new details have been added to the original post.