COBALT CHILDREN: THE CHILD MINERS BEHIND OUR SMARTPHONES
 

Meet Tim Cook, CEO of Apple

APPLE'S POLICY FOR ADDRESSING HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES

"If year-over-year improvement is not demonstrated by a low-performing supplier, they risk losing our business"

 
go back | Home | Our campaign to help the cobalt children in DR Congo

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple: Will you help the cobalt children, please? Artisanal miners and child miners like Richard and Dorsen help companies like yours make vast profits. The work they do is dangerous and pitifully paid. They suffer.

We want corporates who use lithium-ion batteries in their products to offer consumers the opportunity to donate money at the point of sale, or to be able to buy special products to help child cobalt miners. Every time a smartphone, a phone case, a charger, a laptop, a digital camera is sold, consumers could be given the opportunity to help these children. Considering how many units are sold worldwide, every second of every day, funds would be significant and ongoing.

Apple, states it has  "led the industry in establishing the strictest standards" - yet Apple's "low-performing" suppliers (i.e. those that abuse artisanal and child miners) only risk losing Apple's business.

Tim Cook, CEO of Apple: will you set the right example and give some PRACTICAL support to the cobalt children who have helped you make profits?

Meeting Dorsen

When Alex Crawford Sky News first met Dorsen, he was just eight-years-old, hadn't eaten for days and was working long hours in a cobalt mine. He and his friend, Richard, now have a new life at the children's sanctuary, Kimbilio, run by the Congo Children Trust.

Posted by Sky News on Wednesday, 14 February 2018
 
Summary of Apple's response to our letters: "We expect our suppliers to show steady improvement"

There is NO OFFER of reparation or practical support for the children as recommended by Amnesty International. This isn't good enough.

Amnesty International say companies should "take action to remediate the harm suffered."

Wouldn't it be GREAT if Apple really did lead the way to a better world? We will continue to ask Apple to help the cobalt children.

  1. We address our emails and overland letters to Apple CEO, Tim Cook. Our point is simple: you should help the artisanal and child miners who have, or do, contribute to your vast profits
  2. Tim Cook doesn't respond. Apple's response is signed: Apple Supplier Responsibility.
  3. Apple states they are "deeply committed"; they have "led the industry"; and that Apple's approach is "unique".
  4. It is understood that Apple's practical plans to offer reparation to those whose human rights have been abused are non-existent at this time.
  5. Apple's actual plan to address human rights abuses in their supply chain is weak and non-commital.

Suppliers who abuse workers and children only "risk losing" Apple's business: 

We continue to partner with independent third-party auditors to review documents, interview management and line operators, and perform onsite inspections. These include underage workers or involuntary labor, document falsification, intimidation of or retaliation against workers, and egregious environmental and safety risks. We expect our suppliers to show steady improvement. If year-over-year improvement is not demonstrated by a low-performing supplier, they risk losing our business.

[Apple Supplier Responsibility. 2017 Progress Report, page 4]

 
Our first letter to Apple: we ask them to help the cobalt children
 
 

 

Apple's response. Politically correct, but no offer of practical help #shameonthem
 
 
 
Cobalt Children, 2018
Site edited by Flinty Maguire
Content includes images and film copyright: Sky News, 2017
Also images copyright: Congo Children Trust