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Takeo garment workers protest at Ministry of Labour

Workers from a garment factory in Takeo province hold placards during a protest yesterday at the Ministry of Labour in Phnom Penh.
Workers from a garment factory in Takeo province hold placards during a protest yesterday at the Ministry of Labour in Phnom Penh. Vireak Mai

Takeo garment workers protest at Ministry of Labour

More than 300 garment workers from Takeo province protested in front of the Ministry of Labour yesterday, following two weeks of strikes over working conditions.

Workers requested intervention from the ministry over the dismissal of 1,000 striking workers as well as 13 demands including lunch money, a transportation allowance and conforming to wage laws.

According to Collective Union of Movement of Workers director Pav Sina, demands are being ignored on all sides and a court warrant ordering the workers to stop striking and a subsequent warrant permitting the dismissal of striking workers has only caused the protest to grow.

“They [the employers] did not solve it in time until the court issued the warrant . . . which caused many workers to lose their jobs, and that served as the motivation for the boss to not pay attention in solving the problem or responding to the worker’s demands,” Sina said.

An official at the Labour Ministry’s Conflict Department, Vong Sovann, said that the ministry hopes to have the dispute resolved by today.

“The ministry will put more effort to negotiate outside the court system,” he said.

Hong Seng Textile and Yuan Da Rong Fong, the two Chinese-owned factories in Donkeo town that employ the workers, are registered separately but share a representative and – the union says – ownership.

The factories’ representative could not be reached.

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