Cambodia’s garment exports exceeded US$1 billion during the first quarter of 2012, yet many factories are failing to pay workers proper maternity leave benefits or address issues of fainting, a labour report says.
The International Labour Organization-Better Factories Cambodia’s Twenty Eighth Synthesis Report on Working Conditions in Cambodia’s Garment Sector, released yesterday, profiles 136 of the 320 factories registered with Better Factories in the six months to April 30. It found only 54 per cent of garment factories were paying women some or all of their maternity benefits – an 11 per cent drop from the previous six-month period and a 20 per cent fall in just a year.
Nearly all of Cambodia’s garment workers are women with an average age of 24, ILO-Better Factories chief technical adviser Jill Tucker said. “The deterioration of compliance in this area is worrisome and must be addressed.”…
Dave Welsh, country director of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity, said the report presented only part of what was happening. “There’s a more precise report that goes to the brands. The whole picture is even more troubling,” he said, adding GMAC didn’t want this information disclosed.
Strikes had increased because the MoU had lapsed, Welsh added.
Shane Worrell and Mom Kunthear, P. 3