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Dell drops prison labor

Dell Computer said Thursday it will stop using a contractor that relies on prison labor to dismantle and recycle computers.

Dell said it has hired two new contractors to perform the work, Resource Concepts Inc. and Image Microsystems Inc. The computer giant has been under pressure since last week to sever ties with UNICOR, a government-run corporation that uses federal inmates for a variety of money-making ventures.

Accusations against Dell

Last week, the Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, an environmental group in California, accused Dell of running a "primitive" recycling system that exposed inmates to dangerous chemicals as they took apart computers and plucked out the reusable parts. Dell spokesman Bryant Hilton said the switch in vendors was not related to the California group's report. Dell said RCI and Image Microsystems had agreed to certain conditions for doing the recycling work, including compliance within one year with internationally recognized workplace-safety guidelines.

News source: CNN

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