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Bavet protest: No-strike bonus offer backfires

Bavet protest: No-strike bonus offer backfires

A union-estimated 20,000 garment workers in Svay Rieng province are now on strike after learning one factory in their industrial zone distributed a bonus to workers for not protesting in mass garment sector demonstrations during the first week of January.

Workers from about 30 factories in the Manhattan Special Economic Zone in Svay Rieng’s Bavet town have joined the protest, which began following Khmer New Year, after one company, A+J Factory, gave its worker a $50 no-strike bonus, the Collective Union of Movement of Workers (CUMW) claimed.

The Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia released a letter on Friday accusing CUMW of inciting workers to strike, but it denies the accusation.

“If workers from a factory receive a bonus or benefit, then the other workers will demand their company do so too,” said Kat Lot, union vice president. Workers said they will strike until they get the bonus.

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