Apple has partnered with Fair Labor Association, and is moving to allow them access to the factories of its suppliers. Apple is the first technology company to partner with Fair Labor Association. Apple has faced some adversity in 2011 with its suppliers, including suicides at Foxconn, where Apple manufactures its iPhone and iPad lineup.

A release from the Fair Labor Association states:

[quote]FLA Participating Companies agree to uphold the FLA Workplace Code of Conduct throughout their supply chains and commit to the FLA’s Principles of Fair Labor and Responsible Sourcing. In 2011, the FLA worked with Apple to assess the impact of Apple’s training programs which help raise awareness of labor rights and standards among workers in its supply chain. Like all new affiliates, Apple will align its compliance program with FLA obligations within the next two years[/quote]

The Fair Labor Association is a nonprofit organization whose main objective is greater transparency at factories, and other companies involved in supply chains, regarding the treatment of its employees, in an attempt to protect workers’ rights and improve working conditions worldwide.

Last week we published an article about a radio episode from This American Life that featured Apple’s manufacturing history with factories such as Foxconn that have sub-standard conditions. The partnership with Fair Labor Association is a great sign that Apple is taking the working conditions at the factories of its partners very seriously. Hopefully other major technology companies do the same.