Child labour group takes aim at electronic manufacturers that use gold

Sony, Ericsson and Foxconn receive a poor rating on their efforts on combating child labour and gold mining, according to Stop Child Labour.

The activist group ranked ten electronic companies on how well it is performing in eradicating child labour from gold mining.

According to the World Gold Council, the electronics industry consumed 63.9 tonnes of gold in the first quarter of 2016, about 5% of total demand.

Companies were ranked on seven criteria such as “Can the company trace back the origin of gold in its products?” and “Has the company a policy on the eradication of child labour?” The group estimates that more than 1 million children work in gold mines around the world.

“Only two companies, the Dutch Fairphone and the multinational Microsoft show that they are actively involved in gold mining initiatives in which the eradication of child labour is included,” writes in Stop Child Labour.

“Not even one of the electronics companies knows exactly where the gold comes from and whether child labour occurs in these mines.”

Creative commons image of phone by Wowbagger, the Infinitely Prolonged