Saturday, 30 August 2008

MSN Appeal Re: firing of Thai Union leader

From the August 27, 2008 Maquila Solidarity Network story and appeal:

"On July 30, 2008, a Thai subsidiary of Triumph International, one of the world’s largest makers of intimate apparel, fired union president Jitra Kotchadej for wearing an unfashionable t-shirt.

She wasn’t wearing the t-shirt at work, and it wasn’t the colour or the design of the t-shirt that caused offence. It was the message on the shirt: ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime’ -- a reference to the right of people not to stand when the Thai royal anthem is played and to the abuse of Thailand’s lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition.

Ms. Kotchadej was participating in a late night TV debate on women’s reproductive rights. Despite the fact that she was speaking in her private time and not in her capacity as a union leader or worker at Triumph’s Body Fashion (Thailand) Ltd. Factory, she was fired. Since then, 3,000 of her co-workers have walked out of the factory in a show of solidarity, demanding the reinstatement of their union president."

See Support Thai women workers: stop Triumph’s union busting for more information and to send a letter of concern regarding the dismissal of Jitra Kotchadej.

1 comment:

W. Greg Taylor said...

Just received this message from Triumph today:

"I am pleased to announce that an agreement between our subsidiary in
Thailand (Body Fashion Thailand, BFT) and the Labour Union has been signed
to settle t the recent disruption at its factory in Bangplee, Thailand. The
agreement was signed on Friday, 12 September, 2008 by company management,
all members of the union’s negotiating committee and witnessed by officials
of the Thai Labour Ministry. Both the company and the Labour Union are
fully committed to the terms of this settlement and to a speedy resumption
of regular work. All employees who were participating in the disruption
have been considered to be back on the job effective 13 September, 2008.
The actual resumption of work is being managed by an agreed call-back

Throughout this disruption, the company has made it clear that it will not
pursue disciplinary action of any kind against those employees that took
part in the disruption. This remains the company position; workers will not
be punished in any way for participation in the disruption. This is part
of the official settlement with the Labour Union.

On the principle issue of possible reinstatement of a former employee, the
company and the Labour Union have agreed that reconsideration of the
dismissal can only come through the legal means afforded by the Thai court
system. As the former employee filed a petition for a retrial on 6 August,
2008 and the court has scheduled a hearing for this petition on 23
September, 2008 this process is already at work.

BFT and the Labour Union are pleased to welcome back all workers and to
have reached an equitable settlement in this matter."