Hear from the workers taking action against abuse and injustice in Myanmar’s factories

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“How much should we pay to not have a labour organization in our factory? We don’t want any.” - Factory manager to a township official

 

This series of case profiles highlights worker-led actions in Myanmar, undertaken in an environment usually hostile to independent worker organizing and collective action.

Myanmar-based organization WeGeneration Network assisted workers in using the documentation checklist developed by ESCR-Net and Business & Human Rights Resource Centre to record actions that they have taken to address day-to-day abuses in the country’s emerging manufacturing sector – noting successes, disappointments, challenges, and proposing changes that need to take place.

In all of the six cases documented below, workers brought complaints before authorities and achieved results through their collective and sustained action. In all of the cases, they experienced various forms of employer pushback aimed at curtailing their ability to organize and collectively demand better conditions.

This on-going documentation effort aims to provide a platform for workers to directly - using their own voice - raise awareness on their struggle as well as gather more support for worker-led movements. 

Cases documented as of 1 May 2017:

Barriers to labour organizing at Great Well shoe factory

Esquire shoe factory workers organise despite numerous challenges

Migrant workers recruited by May Wint Overseas Employment Company effectively advocate for payment of partial compensation for breach of contract

Union leaders at Gallent Ocean factory secure favorable rulings in union busting cases, but decisions are not properly enforced

Workers at Hong Sein woven bags factory successfully claim back wages & reinstatement of union leader unjustly terminated

Workers bring successful claim with Dept. of Factory & Labor Law Inspection for improved labour conditions at Aung Gabar Pipe Factory

 

All of these cases are also highlighted in our Community Action Platform.