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Garment workers chat amongst themselves as tires burn during a factory protest in Kandal province yesterday morning.
Garment workers chat amongst themselves as tires burn during a factory protest in Kandal province yesterday morning. Photo supplied

Protests over conditions break out at two garment factories

Hundreds of garment workers from two factories – in Phnom Penh and Kandal – yesterday burned car tyres in protest of the labour conditions at their workplaces.

The 150 demonstrators in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district work for Conpress Holdings (Cambodia) Garment Factory Ltd. They demanded that their company provide unlimited, as opposed to fixed, duration contracts, provide 3,000 riel ($0.75) to workers to buy lunch daily, and abide by the labour law.

The 100 workers in Kandal, employed at Winnie Fashion Co Ltd, were protesting what they called poor physical working conditions and the company’s hostile attitude towards unions.

“The workers need the company to adhere to some work conditions and they have protested for five days,” said Som Oun, president of the Federal Union of Cambodia, referring to the Kandal protest.

Moeun Tola, head of the labour program at the Community Legal Education Center said that relations between workers and managers, already low, has deteriorated in the Kingdom throughout the year.

“The lack of a grievance resolution process [in factories] is the main problem,” he said.

Company and GMAC representatives were not available for comment yesterday.

Meanwhile, more than 60 female workers fainted in a Cerie (Cambodia) Garment Co Ltd factory in Kampong Speu yesterday morning, a day after 46 garment workers fainted at the same factory.

Additional reporting by Igor Kossov

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