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25 Aug 2023

Kyaw Kyaw Win, Myanmar Labour News

Myanmar: Garment workers denied social security benefits & forced to work overtime to meet 'unattainable' targets

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"Garment workers of Maiyi Bei (Yangon) demand that they wanted to be provide benefits, social security and workplace safety", 25 August 2023

The workers of MaiyiBei (Yangon) Garment Factory have requested...payment of [their] social security allowance, which is a legal benefit, and safety [of the] workplace.

The worker said that even though he is entitled to take casual leave under the law...he is not allowed to do so in the workplace, so if he takes a day off, [his wages] will be deducted...

“Casual leave is a leave that workers have the right to enjoy. But we don’t get it. We also don’t get medical leave if we sick too. They deducted daily wages and stipend of 1,000 kyats... if we resign for any reason, they also exploit by paying...daily wages [of] only 4,800 instead of 5,600 kyats.”, said by an anonymous labour.

In addition, there is no...contract that must be signed [between the] employers and workers, and there is no social security payment in the workplace with more than 500 workers, and there are no benefits, so the workers said that they would like to see benefits measures implemented.

...the employer does not collect the social security fee. As we don’t pay, we can’t go to a social security clinic for health issues. It’s bad for us.”, said by a labour.

The factory [is] located in Hlaingthary Shwe Linvan Industrial Zone, Yangon Region, is owned by a Chinese national, [and manufactures clothes for] Sinsay...H-ESSENTIAL and other brand coats...

The workers said that there was no provision for good ventilation or clean air in the workplace, and no safety measures were implemented.

In the workplace, the workers are being asked [to meet] an unattainable [target], asking for an increase every day, if the [target] is not met, [workers are forced] to work overtime for free without pay...[the workers also face] swearing [and] threatening, [with the workers being told] they will [be given] a bonus, [but are lied to], and exploiting them in all kinds of ways, the workers said.

The labourers also said that there is no trade union organized in the workplace and no workplace coordination committee (WCC) has been established...