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3 Mar 2023

Hsu Latt Phyu, Myanmar Labour News (Myanmar)

Myanmar: Workers forced to join workers' committee instead of trade union, and dismissed without timely compensation at factory reportedly supplying Stradivarius

See all tags Allegations

IndustriALL Global Union

"Qi Cai (Myanmar) garment factory workers say they want to receive full holiday pay", March 3 2023

At the Qi Cai (Myanmar) Garment Factory, which is operating on U Shwe Bin Road, Shwe Lin Van Industrial Zone, Hlaing Thayar Township, it was said that it will be closed for about a week starting on January 27th.

It is reported that the [factory supplies to STRADIVARIUS] ...

The factory has more than 700 workers and about 200 of them are day laborers. As day laborers, they work at the rate of 5,000 kyats for a 10-hour day.

The workers said that [they] had to sign the WCC agreed to by the employer without forming a trade union in the workplace.

... the super[visors] held a meeting with the workers... and announced that the factory [would be closed without workers being paid from] 27.1 2023 to 6.2.2023.

"The last time I went down was on January 26th, and I was paid for the 26 days I worked that month. The next day, the factory closed, and on February 6th, I still didn't go to work. The super[visors] informed us that we would pay 1,600 per day for the next day of closure. How are we supposed to continue? The food is still there, and we don't know what to do now," said a worker who is having a hard time because the factory is closed.

It is reported that workers will be facing financial difficulties and food difficulties as they have been informed that 1,600 kyats will be paid from April for the days that will continue to be closed.

"We will pay 1,600 stipends in 4 months. Now there is no more money. How can I pay my wages? How can I eat rice? The salaries I received before are not enough. Even if the factory is closed, we should give the workers what they deserve," said one of the struggling workers.

The workers said that they want to receive full and accurate information, not the 1,600 rate set unilaterally by the employer for the day the factory is closed.

He said that even if the factory is to be closed down, he wants to request that it be carried out in accordance with the labour law.

He said that in the past, he did not receive benefits other than social security rights in the workplace, lack of clean drinking water, frequent defecation in toilets, and he experienced health problems.

It is reported that the information in the EC contract signed by the workers is kept by the employer so that the workers cannot read it.

[Supervisors demand targets] that cannot be [met], if the [target] is not met, overtime is given for free. The workers said that they had to work overtime overnight and in the evenings.

[Translation via Google Translate]