Migrant Workers in Thailand Demand Govt Enforce Labor Rights Protection Laws

Migrant workers from Burma in Thailand are demanding that the Thai government implement its existing laws guaranteeing a minimum wage and paid leave.

Thong Kham, who works with the migrant rights group MAP Foundation, told SHAN that domestic workers in particular have a difficult time claiming any sort of labor rights protection.

Housemaids have yet to get social welfare assistance. We demand that they get it, Thong Kham said. We want all housemaids to get all of the benefits stated in Thai law. We want them to earn the basic salary stated in Thai law. These workers want holiday.

According to Thai labor law, a migrant worker can earn 320 baht (US$10.50) per day or 9,600 baht ($317) per month. However, in practice, migrant workers doing domestic work typically earn 7,000-8,000 baht per month ($231-$264).

We earn less salary than what the government has written [that we should earn]. The bosses don’t want to increase our salary. I earn 7,500 baht per month, Nang Li, a domestic worker in Chiang Mai, told SHAN.

She said she wants what the Thai government has promised.

In practice, our work is really difficult. We don’t have any private time, Nang Li said.

The Thai government is scheduled to renew existing migrant work permits in February next year. Migrant workers have called on the authorities to make this process as smooth as possible.

MAP Foundation organized an event to share information in Chiang Mai on December 15 to mark International Migrant Labor Day.

According to labor activists, there are at least 3 million people from Burma working in Thailand.

Source: The Shan Herald Agency for News