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MoU aims to protect migrants in Thailand

MoU aims to protect migrants in Thailand

The Manpower Association of Cambodia and the Association of Cambodian Recruitment Agencies signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Thai-Cambodian Relations Association on Wednesday to promote rights and welfare and protect Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand.

The MoU is a new measure by the three agencies to cooperate with the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training to protect and increase the benefits of Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand.

Minister Ith Sam Heng who attended the signing ceremony called the inking of the MoU “the establishment of a partnership between the institutions with associates”.

“We will ensure the rights, interests and good cooperation with associates and find more labour benefits in Thailand. We will put more effort into seeking protection for our people, within the legal protection [framework] in Thailand,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sam Heng asked for transition houses where workers who want to change the workplace can temporarily stay. Such houses already exist in Korea. Cambodians can stay there and find a workplace they like.

Association of Cambodian Recruitment Agencies (ACRA) head, Ung Seang Rithy, said the MoU is a mechanism to join with the Ministry of Labour to increase the benefits of Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand.

“I hope that after this signing, the cooperation to promote their rights and welfare, and protect the benefits due to Cambodian migrant workers in Thailand will improve,” she said.

Meanwhile, Sam Heng said after 30 June this year, 1.8 million migrant workers were legalised after a four-year campaign.

“It is the success as 1.8 million Cambodian workers have been legitimised. There are some left, but very few."

If we find workers with expired passports, we will inform the embassy and an official will immediately go [to the spot].

“Thailand will mediate and will not take legal measures in such cases,” he said.

ACRA executive director Pin Vireak noted that some Cambodian workers did not know where to seek help from when they experience problems with employers.

“Cambodian documented workers could contact us for help. We work with other partners and now we are preparing to open an office in Thailand,” he said.