Factory’s workers ordered back

October 30th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Thousands of employees at Grand Twins International, Cambodia’s only publicly listed garment factory, will be back at the assembly line today after nearly two weeks on strike, accepting a court order to return to work.

Workers will follow the order the Phnom Penh Municipal Court issued Monday to return, Grand Twins staff representative Kao Vannet said yesterday, but will continue trying to get the benefits they demand.

The strike is the first Grand Twins International has experienced since its establishment in 1997, Grand Twins chief strategy officer David Liu said during an interview at the factory yesterday. …

Sean Teehan and Mom Kunthear
http://phnompenhpost.com/national/factory%E2%80%99s-workers-ordered-back

Transparency boosting Cambodia factory improvements

October 22nd, 2014 , Just-Style

Transparent reporting of garment factory compliance in Cambodia is
continuing to help to improve conditions for workers, according to a new
report.

In its third online transparency report, the International Labor
Organization (ILO’s) Better Factories Cambodia (BFC) programme said two
of the 13 factories in the Low Compliance group had made 31 improvements
and moved off the list. …

Michelle Russell
http://www.just-style.com/news/transparency-boosting-cambodia-factory-improvements_id123308.aspx

Poverty line $120, gov’t says

October 3rd, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Workers in Cambodia’s capital earning less than $120 per month are living below the poverty line, according to the Ministry of Planning’s own calculation.

At a September 17 workshop on the garment industry minimum wage, International Labor Organization Cambodia national director Tun Sophorn cited Ministry of Planning data that put the poverty line at $120, he said yesterday. …

Sean Teehan
http://phnompenhpost.com/national/poverty-line-120-gov%E2%80%99t-says

Mass firing at Xin Fang factory

September 9th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

In a mass firing the scale of which has not been seen since January, Phnom Penh’s Xin Fang garment factory yesterday terminated 106 employees for protesting in front of the factory.

Management at the Por Sen Chey district factory on Thursday already sacked nearly 30 striking workers who ignored a court injunction for them to return to work, said Vong Thavin, Xin Fang’s administrative manager. …

Mom Kunthear
http://phnompenhpost.com/national/mass-firing-xin-fang-factory

‘Solvable problems’ focus of fainting review

August 25th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Amid reports of increased mass-fainting incidents in Cambodia’s garment sector, workers, employers and government officials gathered in Phnom Penh yesterday for a roundtable discussion on the issue.

The conference, which was organised by the Cambodian Center for Independent Media, identified issues such as workday lengths and holidays as solvable problems that could reduce a large number of garment worker faintings, said Labour Ministry Inspection Department Director Ouk Chanthou. …

Mom Kunthear
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/%E2%80%98solvable-problems%E2%80%99-focus-fainting-review

Delay on maid deal: ministry

August 25th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

The Ministry of Labour plans to delay signing off on a controversial agreement to reopen a pipeline of Cambodian maids to Malaysia until a deal is reached on a second agreement regarding other migrant workers, a ministry official said yesterday.

Labour Ministry spokesman Heng Sour told the Post that no date has been set for the final discussions over the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) regarding domestic workers, but Cambodia is “proposing [that the] Malaysian side … also draft [a second] MoU” concerning workers including those in manufacture and agriculture industries. …

Alice Cuddy
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/delay-maid-deal-ministry

Unions in push for park rally

August 8th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

As the razor-wire came down from Freedom Park on Wednesday, a group of unions quickly filed a request to be the first people to hold a demonstration inside the park since it was put into lockdown in early January.

The letter, obtained by the Post yesterday, calls on Phnom Penh Governor Pa Socheatvong to allow six unions to hold the rally on International Youth Day on Tuesday.

Sar Mora, president of the Cambodian Food and Service Workers’ Federation, said that the demonstration would call for higher salaries, improved working conditions, a better quality of education and vocational training for the Kingdom’s youths. …

Mom Kunthear and Alice Cuddy
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/unions-push-park-rally

Unions up wage demands

August 5th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Deposite not coming close to achieving their goal of a $160 monthly minimum garment wage, unions announced yesterday that they will raise their demands to $177 for 2015.

Ken Chhenglang, acting pres­ident of the National Independent Federation Textile Union of Cambodia (NIFTUC), said about 10 union representatives had last week reached an agreement to push for this figure in a meeting with employers scheduled for Friday. …

Mom Kunthear
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/unions-wage-demands

Migrants in ‘hurry’ to get back to work

August 1st, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

A survey of 10 Cambodian provinces is studying the whereabouts and plans of migrant workers who were recently repatriated from Thailand, fearing crackdowns on foreign workers there after the coup.

During a workshop hosted by Coordination of Action Research on AIDS and Mobility (CARAM) yesterday, Ministry of Interior secretary of state Chou Bun Eng said early indications show many workers are opting to cross back into Thailand illegally, rather than going through legal channels. …

Sen David
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/migrants-%E2%80%98hurry%E2%80%99-get-back-work

Expatriates need IDs: government

July 30th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Expatriates working in Cambodia without labour identification cards will face fines and even jail when strict new enforcement kicks in, according to a July 16 joint statement from the ministries of interior and labour.

Government inspectors, the statement adds, will begin checking workplaces immediately in order to fully enforce a law the ministries say has rarely been enforced.

Under that law, employers, the statement adds, must provide ID cards to expatriates, separate to their visas. …

Chhay Channyda
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/expatriates-need-ids-government

Wages do not compute: ILO

July 30th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

NGOs say the Ministry of Labour’s use of its own method for determining the garment industry’s minimum wage is risking a repeat of the tensions that exploded in violent protests in January, when authorities killed at least five people.

More than six months after the Labour Ministry commissioned the International Labour Organization to help set a formula to calculate the garment sector’s minimum wage, the advice has not been heeded, ILO national project coordinator Tun Sophorn said. …

Sean Teehan
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/wages-do-not-compute-ilo

Migrants told to get permits

July 14th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday called on all undocumented Cambodians in Thailand to register for a legal work permit at one of that country’s newly opened one-stop service centres.

Thailand’s junta began piloting the latest temporary registration centres at the end of June and has since rolled out additional sites countrywide. At the centres, workers are required to undergo background screenings, health checks and purchase health insurance before applying for a permit. …

Sen David
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/migrants-told-get-permits

Getting on the same page

July 14th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

In what is shaping up to be the first of several pivotal garment wage talks, unions are to meet for the first time today to discuss the amount they should request for next year’s minimum wage – but labour leaders and observers say coming to a consensus will be difficult, if not impossible.

Up to 50 representatives of pro-government, pro-opposition, pro-factory and independent unions are scheduled to gather at the Green Palace Hotel in Phnom Penh at 8am. The event was organised by the Cambodian Labour Confederation (CLC) and several international labour organisations.

The meeting comes a week before an official two-day workshop of the Ministry of Labour’s Labour Advisory Committee (LAC). Floor wages at the Kingdom’s garment and shoe factories stand at $100 per month. …

Sean Teehan
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/getting-same-page

Factory wage rallies heat up

July 11th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

More than 1,000 workers held a demonstration in front of Ocean Garment factory in the capital yesterday, burning tyres and blocking the road in protest against the management’s refusal to abide by a ruling that workers be paid in full for a one-month closure.

On May 24, Ocean management announced to employees that the factory would close until June 26, and that workers would be paid $15 for the intervening period.

After the Arbitration Council ruled on Wednesday that the factory – which remains closed – must pay employees their full salaries for the month (at least $100 per worker), Ocean wrote in a letter that it would not follow the ruling and intended to pay workers just $50 for that month. …

Mom Kunthear
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/factory-wage-rallies-heat

Workers win seniority pay

June 30th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

A six-month standoff that eventually halted a box factory’s production ended on Friday, when managers of the factory in the capital’s Por Sen Chey district paid seniority bonuses to almost 150 former employees.

Harta Packaging Industries paid bonuses of between $500 and $4,000 to a total of 145 former workers after an agreement was reached at the Ministry of Labour on Thursday, So Pheakdey, Harta’s administrative manager, said yesterday.

Payments came after more than 200 former workers and unionists had blocked the shipments in and outside the factory since the previous Saturday. …

Mom Kunthear
http://www.phnompenhpost.com/national/workers-win-seniority-pay