The Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday blocked Apple’s request not to hold a vote at its annual meeting on a shareholder proposal to require the tech giant to provide increased transparency about its supply chain in order to to protect workers against forced labour.
The SEC said in a letter seen by Reuters on Wednesday, “it does not appear that the essential objectives of the proposal have been implemented.”
If the vote passes, Apple will have to detail the steps it has taken to screen suppliers and contractors for forced labor risks.
The proposal comes from activist group SumOfUs, whose efforts last year in part prompted Apple to release a new human rights policy.
“There is rightly growing concern at all levels of government about concentration camp-like conditions for Uyghurs and other Turkish Muslims living under Chinese government rule,” campaign manager Vicky Wyatt said Wednesday. of SumOfUs, in a statement to Reuters.