Mon, 13/07/2009 - 19:37
On July 13, workers rallied at the office of the Board of Investment, saying that the Board’s support for the investment of Body Fashion (Thailand) Co in Nakhon Sawan lost almost 2,000 of their jobs in Bang Phli, Samut Prakan.
According to Bunrod Saiwong, leader of the Triumph Labour Union, Body Fashion Co has laid off 1,959 workers at its Bang Phli factory, in a bid to relocate its production base to another province where there is cheaper labour and no labour union.
The union demands that the BOI reveal the information and reasons for giving support to the company, and suspend its support until the company reinstates the laid off workers.
Affiliated to Triumph International Co, Body Fashion (Thailand) Co produces swimwear, underwear and sportswear for brand names including Triumph, Sloggi, etc.
On June 29, the company announced that 1,959 workers or about 50% of its workforce at the Bang Phli factory in Samut Prakan were to be laid off on Aug 31. Most of them are members of the labour union and women, including those who are pregnant, old, sick or disabled. 13 out of 19 members of the union committee are also to be laid off, says the union in its letter to the BOI.
The company claims that it did so to restructure costs to improve overall efficiency, while it has built a new factory in Nakhon Sawan, which at full capacity can employ 2,000 workers, with a 75.5 million-baht investment supported by the BOI. Currently, the factory employs more than 1,000 workers, and there is no labour union.
The Triumph Labour Union believes that, besides relocating to where labour is cheaper, the layoff is meant to destroy the labour union.
In July 2008, former leader of Triumph Labour Union Jitra Kotchadet was sacked by the company who claimed that she had ruined its reputation by wearing a campaign t-shirt in support of Chotisak Onsoong’s defiance of the lèse majesté law while appearing on a national TV programme.
Afterwards the union members held a series of protests, claiming the company was trying to destroy the labour union. The showdown came to an end when the provincial Labour Court in Samut Prakan ruled in favour of the company in September 2008.
Labour woman leader sacked for wearing T-shirt defiant of lèse majesté law
Triumph Labour Union downs tools, demands reinstatement of its leader
Triumph union workers protest at company headquarters
Triumph and LINDE Workers Declared Joint Struggle
Unfair Labour Practices at Triumph International
Press Statement of Body Fashion Thailand (BFT)
Triumph labour fight still on
Dismissal of a union leader wearing a protest shirt
Triumph Trade Union Ends its 46-Day Work Stoppage