Wednesday, April 21, 2010


The "tech miracles" that gain such enthusiastic praise (and even more enthusiastic marketing) often have a grimy core that is hidden beneath the gee-whiz. One such situation is the Young fast Optoelectronics company in Taiwan, manufacturers of touch screens for some of the biggest players in the world tech market. The following appeal for these workers is from the online labour solidarity site Labour Start.
Taiwan: Touch panel screen workers struggle for basic rights
Workers at Young Fast Optoelectronics (YFO) in Taiwan urgently request your support for their struggle to defend their union and basic labour rights against the company's union-busting actions and the Taiwanese government's negligence of the law. YFO is one of the major manufacturers for touch panel screens in the world; its buyers include: Samsung, LG, HTC and Google. Although making tremendous profits, the working conditions in YFO's Taoyuan Plant are worse than most people expected. The unacceptable conditions include child labour, excessive and forced overtime working, deduction of overtime wages, and poor health and safety conditions. YFO has been sabotaging the union YFOTU since its establishment in December 2009. It dismissed five union officers and more than ten active union members in March 2010, under the pretense that their production line will be moved to China. Trade unionists in Taiwan believe that this is a deliberate union-busting action and gross violation of the Labor Union Law. YFOTU and National Federation of Independent Trade Unions (NAFITU), which YFOTU is affiliated with, have waged a campaign since the illegal dismissal.
Please go to this link to send the following letter to both the Taiwanese government and to corporate management.
I am deeply concerned about the working conditions and union-busting actions at Young Fast Optoelectronics (YFO), which is a supplier to Samsung, LG, HTC, Google, Qualcomm, Vodafone, Verizon, Chunhwa Telecom and Taiwan Mobile, and I am writing to request you to look into the case and correct the abuses of labor rights in YFO. In support of YFOTU and NAFITU, I call on the above mentioned corporations to communicate with YFO aiming to reinstate the dismissed union officers and members; resolve the labor dispute through dialogue with YFOTU and NAFITU; monitor the labor rights and working conditions, and prevent repetition of labor rights abuse in YFO. I also strongly urge the Taiwan Government to make a thorough investigation on the working conditions and labor rights in YFO; and to take concrete actions against the illegalities and to protect the workers in YFO.

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