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24 Aug 2023

Hsu Latt Phyu, Myanmar Labour News

Myanmar: Workers at garment factory reportedly forced to work overtime on below minimum wage pay

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"Some workers are forced to work overtime for 34 hours a week, with 3,600 kyats", 24 August 2023

A HUNTER TEXTILE garment factory worker said that he had to [work] from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. one day for the reason that the order was important.

"Because the order is important, we have to work overtime (all night). If the lines are not finished, we have to sew from 8:00 AM to 11:00 AM," said the worker.

The factory is located in Hlaingthayar Township Industrial Zone 4, Myawati King Street, Yangon Region, with more than 700 workers, and it sews [for] international brands such as OVS [and] MANA...

Garment workers at the factory have 2 hours of overtime included in their normal working hours, and the rest of the overtime pay is paid separately before the salary is paid.

In addition, for the [helper] position in the workplace, only day laborers are hired and the daily wages are paid only 3,600 kyats.

According to the law, the minimum wage is 4,800 kyats, while the current rate for daily workers is 3,600 kyats. In addition to the loss of holiday benefits and other benefits, there are around 70 workers who are working for less than the minimum wage...

It is reported that some of the day workers have been working for more than 3 months to 1 year, and there [has been] no change in salary, and they have not been appointed as permanent employees.

"...If you have diarrhea...you will never get a full dose of saline solution. You will only get a cup of saline solution a month. After that, you only have a small amount of saline solution....," the worker said.

In the workplace, even if you get the legal benefits, if you want to take the leave, it is not easy to get it. He said that if he wants to take social security and medical leave, it is difficult because social security is granted only after a day's notice.

Therefore, if there is any reason...workers [need to take leave], they have to choose unpaid leave.

In addition, the worker said that the super leaders, who are the supervisory workers, used to shout rudely if the standards were not met.

There is no trade union in the workplace, but the WCC has been formed, and currently it is difficult due to the political situation to [talk about] difficulties in the workplace.

As workers, [they] should demand [targets] that we can achieve. [The workers ask for the factory:]

To hire day laborers as permanent employees after completing (3) months.

(a) To recalculate daily overtime pay with [debt]

(b) To recalculate the salary for Sunday working days with [debt]

...allow [leave] to be enjoyed in accordance with labor rights.

(a) If you are going to take medical leave, do not [ask workers to] apply for leave in advance; To place a doctor instead of a nurse in the clinic. to give full medicine, To ask the consent of the workers if [they] called for overtime. To call only those who can [work overtime] Don't hold grudges against those who don't want to [work overtime]. Don't shout and talk [at workers]. According to the workers, they want [the factory] to sort out [transport] in a fair way according to the population.

[Translation via Google Translate]