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On May 22nd, 2016, Worker’s Information Center (WIC) celebrated annual Worker’s Forum reached to about 350 garment workers. This forum aimed to celebrate the 130th International Labor Day, exchange learning and experiences of workers both working and living conditions, and create safe space for dialogue between workers and key stakeholders on policies related to health, wage, security, safety, and living costs. 
Why workers should not get 50 percent of wage when factory does not have full employment?
Published on, 22, September, 2015, 07:45 AM | View : 936
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Workers at M&V International Manufacturing Ltd 3rd Branch, on March 29, 2016, got full compensation for accrued leave with 50 percent paid.

After the factory claims that it doesn’t have full employment, workers at M&V were accrued with 50 percent of wage and get work suspension from early 2015 until March 2016. Nguon Samnang, 40, a worker who have seniority in the factory nearly 20 years, told that the status of not having enough work had been started since early 2015  when the factory allowed to work 4 days and turned 3 days as accrued leave with 50 percent paid of the minimum wage . Later on, this work status was exacerbated which workers can only work for 1 week and take 2 weeks off.

Besides facing of not having full employment with 50 percent paid of minimum wage, workers at M&V 3rd branch also face another problem of work suspension. All the suspended workers are paid only $50 a month. This cause them a lot of problems for livelihood, their children dropped out of school, falling into debt, and they have to find additional work. Because garment workers who mostly migrant from provinces have the burden of earning money to support their family, when the work situation changes, it affects their living condition seriously. Tol Thy, 35, from Kampong Cham said that he is the head of his household and has to look after his wife who is sick, and two children. This worker in (Phong section) continued that when there is not full employment, he has to borrow money from banks to support the family and pay for his wife’s treatment.

Not being able to bear the situation which not having full employment like this, garment workers at M&V 3rd branch in January 2016, had gathered together as a small group and came to asked Workers’ Information Center(WIC) for advice in dealing with the problems. WIC had agreed to coordinate in term of providing technical support and work together with workers in every process. WIC and worker representatives had continued to collect information and other relevant documents. Some workers also went to ask union representatives about this problem, but were told to refer to brand owner for information. In the factory, Sin Pisey confirmed that “Now we do not strike but we try to talk to the factory owner to provide us work. They promise to provide us work in April, yet obviously in February, they closed 3rd and 4th Floor and didn’t let us in. Then we didn’t go back home, instead we spread a tent and carton paper on yard of the factory.

There are meeting and discussion several times about the situation, update information, and relevant documents as well as inspection at several locations related to the production chain. Later on, there are meetings to identify stakeholders organized by WIC who had communicated with brand owner to hold a discussion with worker representatives on situation occurring in the factory. After intervention from stakeholders, on Mar 24, 2016, M&V 3rd brand issued an announcement to all worker that “the company decided to give the 100% of minimum wage based on days that workers have no work to do practically.” 
This compensation applies from July 1 , 2015 until March 25 , 2016 . Total of workers who received compensation was about 2,000, each of them received compensation between $ 50 to $ 190. This compensation has nothing related to work suspension case.

Labor Law Article 83 about the fault of the employer ( paragraph 1 and 5)
                  Article 104 about the guaranteed minimum wage
                 Article 105  about the invalidity of contract which the rate is lower than minimum wage

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