Apple today announced the formation of a new $50M Supplier Employee Development Fund that is aimed at expanding learning opportunities and skills development in its supply chain.
The fund also includes new and expanded partnerships with leading rights advocates, universities, and nonprofits to drive Apple’s ongoing work to empower supplier employees and drive improvements in knowledge of and respect for workplace rights across industries.
The company is working alongside supply chain partners to amplify workers’ voices. That includes supporting the worker rights programs created by the International Labour Organization (ILO) for people in the electronics sector, and the work the International Organization for Migration (IOM) is doing to expand rights training and scale its industry-leading responsible labor recruitment tools.
Apple’s senior director of Environment and Supply Chain Innovation Sarah Chandler said “We put people first in everything that we do, and we’re proud to announce a new commitment to accelerate our progress and provide even more opportunities for people across our supply chain. Together with rights advocates and education leaders, we are continuing to drive new innovation to support people and the planet.”
Apple says it hopes to offer learning opportunities to 100,000 supplier employees by 2023 in the US, China, India, and Vietnam. Opportunities will include leadership training, technical certifications, and classes on disciplines like coding and robotics as well as advanced manufacturing fundamentals and green manufacturing.
“At IOM, we understand that supply chain responsibility is complex, and must be driven by innovation, results, and partnerships,” said Amy Pope, IOM’s deputy director general for Management and Reform. “Improving people’s lives must be at its core. The IOM and Apple partnership has proven results in Apple’s own supply chain and paves the way for others in the industry to follow. To effect real change, we need global collaboration that engages workers, NGOs, government, and industry. Apple’s new commitments will have tangible, meaningful benefits for workers around the world.”
Apple is also today releasing its 16th annual People and Environment in Our Supply Chain Report, which details how Apple and its suppliers are “supporting people across the company’s supply chain, transitioning to clean energy, and investing in cutting-edge technologies.”