Myanmar: Brands confirm workers have been paid owed severance from Young Clothing after garment workers stage protests following factory closure
In December 2020, 14 garment workers staged protests over owed severance pay from Young Clothing garment factory in Myanmar, after the factory closed in September. The factory employed over 1,000 workers at the time of closure. Workers are calling for full severance pay, in accordance with local labour law.
According to publicly available information, Young Clothing garment factory produces for international brands including Mark's Work Wearhouse, Lidl and s.Oliver.
Business & Human Rights Resource Centre invited Mark's Work Wearhouse, LIDL and s.Oliver to respond. All three companies responded that they had investigated and confirmed owed wages and severance had been paid to the majority of workers by 18 December. Mark's Work Wearhouse confirmed that as of 31 December, 1,171 workers had been paid in full and a remaining 65 workers are in negotiation with the factory’s human resources team for amounts or services (such as helping workers find new jobs in other factories) above and beyond the legally required severance offered. The full responses are included below.
We also reached out to Muji and Aldi who both confirmed they do not have a relationship with the factory.
This case is featured in BHRRC's report, Wage theft and pandemic profits: The right to a living wage for garment workers, released in March 2021.