【 Bloomberg 】   Post Date: 9/6/2012
Chinese Activist Wants Apple to Use Influence to Oppose One-Child Policy
Author: Sara Forden and Adam Satariano
Renowned activist Chen Guangcheng is urging the company to use its clout, which he says is a social responsibility.  Many devices that Apple sells worldwide are produced in plants in China, and some of those plants have come under fire for worker abuses.
Chen Guangcheng, the Chinese dissident whose flight to the U.S. in April roiled U.S.-China relations, said iPhone-maker Apple Inc. (AAPL) should take a more outspoken role criticizing China for its one-child policy.
Apple, which hires manufacturers to assemble products such as the iPhone and iPad in China, can help stop forced abortions and other coercive population control measures, Chen said in an interview this week. The blind human-rights activist is betting that Apple’s presence in China and the popularity of its products there will help draw attention to the issue.
“Apple in China should take a very active role,” Chen said. “There’s a huge social responsibility for these international corporations like Apple.”
This is the first time since arriving in the U.S. that the civil rights activist is speaking against his country’s forced birth-control policy, the issue that led to his arrest and jail term in China. Chen received a fellowship to study at New York University after seeking help at the U.S. embassy in Beijing just as high-level talks between the two countries got under way in April.
Chen and other China human-rights advocates are seeking a meeting with Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook to discuss their concerns. They sent a letter to Cook last week asking Apple to adopt measures to end coercive family planning practices in its factories. The proposals included prohibiting access to factories for government family-planning officials and refusing to report women who are pregnant without birth permits. The group also wants other companies, including Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO), to urge the Chinese government to drop its policy.
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Key Words: Apple, Chen Guangcheng, human rights China, political dissidents China
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