Shouting their demands and trying to force their way through the gate, thousands of striking garment workers rallied in front of the Ministry of Social Affairs to no avail yesterday. The strikes came the morning after management posted a notice saying some 6,000 striking workers were fired unless they returned to work.
More than two weeks after workers first walked off the job at SL Garment Processing (Cambodia) Ltd, approximately 4,000 of them yesterday gathered outside the Social Affairs Ministry. …
Workers’ 12 demands include a monthly minimum wage increase to $150 and for the company to cut all ties with shareholder Meas Sotha, who hired military police to stand guard inside the factory.
C.CAWDU vice president Kong Athit said Sotha’s bringing in of military police amounted to intimidation, provoking workers to strike. The company’s subsequent unwillingness to engage in serious negotiations, he added, demonstrates it is simply trying to remove C.CAWDU from the factory. “This is their way to bust the unions,” Athit said.
Management is willing to negotiate with C.CAWDU, insisted Ken Loo, secretary-general of the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, but the demand of removing Sotha remains a sticking point. …
Mom Kunthear and Sean Teehan