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11 Jul 2022

Cambodia: Garment workers protest for approx. $800,000 in unpaid compensation & wages after factory closure; incl. co. response

In April 2022, around 300 garment workers from Canteran Apparel factory, reported to supply Walmart, protested after the company transported machines from the factory without advanced notice, which caused workers to suspect the company owner would shut the factory without paying workers any severance compensation. The company had allegedly signed a contract with workers stating that it would refrain from transporting the machinery.

In May 2022, workers reported the director had left the factory without notice, which led to workers protesting outside the factory, demanding their owed compensation, salaries and benefits. The workers filed a petition with the Labour Ministry and held two sessions with ministry figures, however the workers claimed these steps had not produced a solution to ensure workers received the compensation they were owed under Cambodian Law. It was estimated that workers were owed roughly $800,000.

In June 2022, around 100 workers petitioned the prime minister to address their grievances, as protests continued.

In July 2022, Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Walmart to respond. Walmart said it had not manufactured products from Canteran Apparel since March 2020.