1. What are the ethical challenges that apple or the person is facing? Why? There were two ethical challenges that Apple has two addressed. It involves Apple’s suppliers in China who were not keen on good business practices. First is the environmental issue and the second is the child labor issue. In 2010, Apple’s suppliers have been reported to have been using a chemical n-hexane which is a poisonous chemical substance. It was reported that 49 of its supplier’s workers in China had been poisoned. Also, one of the suppliers of its Macbook has been shut down by the Chinese government for violating environmental laws after a resident complained of unbearable odors, which were described as a mix of chemical fertilizer and burning plastic in one of its plants. In the same breadth, it was also reported that Apple’s suppliers in China had been employing underage workers and in effect, contracting child labor. These issues pose an ethical challenge to Apple because of its supplier seeming disregard for the environment and compliance with international labor standards.
These issues have to be addressed by Apple because this will undermine its positive and image and good brand. 2.
Who are their stakeholders? A big technological company like Apple involves many stakeholders. In addition to its stockholders who placed their money in Apple, its other stakeholders involves its employees, suppliers, government and society in general. 3. What are they doing or planning to do about their challenges? In November 15, 2011 it was reported that Apple sent five employees to meet with five different environmental groups to address the environmental issues of its suppliers. In the meeting, Apple learned that its suppliers practices troubling environmental negligence to as many as 22 of its product suppliers.
The environmental group reported that Apple’s suppliers were toxic gases and other pollutants. Apple acknowledged that a number of its supplier does not conform to ideal environmental standards and vowed that it will improve the environmental standards of its suppliers. With regard to the use of child labor, there was no reported concrete action on the part of Apple. 4. What are the foreseeable future problems or opportunities? The foreseeable future problem for Apple would be the extent of its suppliers’ unethical use of pollutants and child labor.
Apple may have just discovered part of it. Also, if the media will highlight the unethical practice of Apple’s suppliers, this will have a drawback on its positive image and brand and could affect its sales. 5. How should Apple solve these issues? Apple should police its own suppliers and enforce correct environmental and labor standards in all of its suppliers. If its supplier violates the environmental and labor standard, Apple should not hesitate to penalize its supplier or shut it down. The enforcement of stricter environmental and labor policy on its suppliers is necessary because tolerating such unethical labor and environmental policy can have a negative drawback from the general public and undermine its image and brand.