Apple Announces $50 Million Educational Initiative for Supply Chain Workers

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Apple is launching a Supplier Employee Development Fund in partnership with labor and education organizations, spending $50 million to empower supplier employees through training.

The new project is being created in collaboration with the International Labor Organization, the International Organization for Migration, plus what Apple describes as new and expanded partnerships with other groups. These include universities, non-profit organizations and leading rights advocates.

“We put people first in everything we do,” Sarah Chandler, Apple’s senior director of Environment and Supply Chain Innovation, said in a statement, “and we’re proud to announce a new commitment to our progress. accelerate and open up even more opportunities for people across our supply chain.”

“Together with rights advocates and education leaders,” she continued, “we will continue to drive new innovation to support people and the planet.”

The $50 million investment will support workers’ rights programs in the electronics industry. It also includes supporting the work of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in its efforts to expand rights training and the use of its workforce recruitment tools.

“At IOM, we understand that supply chain responsibility is complex and must be driven by innovation, results and partnerships,” said Amy Pope, IOM Deputy Director General for Management and Reform, in the same statement. “Improving people’s lives should be central.”

“The collaboration between IOM and Apple has proven results in Apple’s own supply chain and is paving the way for others in the industry to follow,” she continued. “To drive real change, we need global collaboration involving workers, NGOs, government and industry. Apple’s new commitments will deliver tangible, meaningful benefits to workers around the world.”

Apple expects more than 100,000 supplier employees to participate in the new education training and courses by 2023. The courses range from technical certifications and leadership training to coding, robotics and manufacturing.

Apple says this new fund continues the company’s commitment to investing in people. Previous training for supplier employees has reportedly reached more than five million people.

In addition to announcing the new fund, Apple has published its 16th annual People and Environment in Our Supply Chain Report. It was published slightly earlier in the year than the 2021 report and summarizes how Apple is supporting people in the clean energy transition across the supply chain.

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