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Contemplations on New iPhone purchase and social justice

by Erin Murphy

Your SAS Advocacy Manager here. Do you struggle with being an ethical consumer and balancing a good deal with your commitment to social justice? I sure do!

I’ve been an android user for 2 years now and unfortunately my smart phone was becoming less and less smart by the month. In fact, things got so bad, my cell provider gave me a replacement phone! At this point though, I am just biding my time until the iPhone 5 comes out. I figure I’ve waited this long for an iPhone, I can wait just a little bit longer till the newest version is released! At least I think I can wait……..

So yeah, I’m soon to become a full blown Apple user–I’ve got just about everything else at this point and only need to top it off with a phone. So now the question is who to buy from? At&t or Verizon? I was all about Verizon until I heard rumors that they don’t treat their employees that great. Not long after that, my friend sends me THIS consumer ranking and turns out Verizon is among the 20 worst companies for social and environmental responsibility–uhoh. They including a human rights and social component that evaluates for trafficking.

So that now leaves me wondering. Is getting a good deal and better coverage worth supporting a potential socially irresponsible company? And how much do I trust the measurements and metrics that went into the ranking? I’m trying to figure the methods and it’s a bit weighed down in millions of links–not exactly clear. I do want to be a critical consumer of goods as well as a critical consumer of information. Hmmmm. Thoughts? I mean, I only volunteer and work in non-profit that is all about the empowerment of women and bettering society. How do I avoid contradiction and balance my commitment to social justice with how I spend my money? I’ve heard of people doing different things and I’d love to hear from you!

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