Yet Another DeathS

In what seems to be a daily occurrence, another worker at the Foxconn Shenzhen plant has jumped to his death on late Wednesday.

Moreover, Reuters reports that three Taiwan TV stations brought news of another person that had jumped on Wednesday. The jumper, a young woman, survived with serious injuries. This information is still unconfirmed, but as Reuters points out, it could bring the tally to 13 falls, with three survivors. This number does not include the employee who was apparently beaten to death by Foxconn security.

Foxconn is the largest electronics manufacturer in the world. Its China-based factories churn out iPods, iPads, iPhones, Kindles, PS2s, PS3s, Wiis and Xbox 360s. Apple recently commented, releasing a statement that it is "saddened and upset by the recent suicides at Foxconn". What's more, the company is "in direct contact with Foxconn senior management and we believe they are taking this matter very seriously."

There 420,000 employees based at its Shenzhen plant alone. Foxconn has taken measures to counter the suicides by installing nets around the company dormitories where the employees live as well as the factories. According to the company's CEO, "Although this seems like a dumb measure, at least it could save a life should anyone else fall." Other measures include a contract in which employees promise not to comment suicide or sue the company.

The secretary general of the Shenzhen municipal government, the police and Foxconn are jointly considering ideas to improve the living environment — such as building sports and cultural facilities. "The region is home to millions of migrant workers," writes Reuters, "many isolated from their families and facing a bleak, low-paid existence on production lines."

Bank of America and Merrill Lynch have told clients that these incidents would affect Foxconn's image, but are unlikely to seriously impact earnings.

Foxconn hit by 10th jumping death | Reuters [Reuters Thanks, Austin!]