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Rangoon workers demonstrate against excessive overtime

Bangkok (Mizzima) – Nearly 3,000 workers at the Tai Yi leather factory in an industrial zone in Hlaingtharyar Township, a Rangoon suburban, demonstrated against extra long working hours and salary cuts on Tuesday.

Shown in this file photo is a small group of an estimated 2,000 workers who went on strike for higher wages at three factories in the Hlaingtharyar Industrial Zone in February 2010. The authorities deployed riot police around the area. (Photo: Mizzima)On Wednesday afternoon, officials from the Industrial Zone Workers’ Affairs Department went to the factory and attempted to negotiate between the two sides, but with no success.

Workers from the main Tai Yi leather factory on Phanchakwun Oo Shwe Ohn Road in Industrial Zone (3) and workers from a branch of the Tai Yi factory both took part in the demonstration, Ko Than, a labour rights activist, told Mizzima.

‘Their main goal is to reduce their working hours. And the next problem is that their salaries have been cut’, Ko Than said.

In late January, the same workers staged a protest to urge the Tai Yi factory authorities to reduce working hours. At that time, the factory agreed that workers should continue to work until 8 p.m and promised not to force the workers to work on holidays.

But in late February, the factory officials declared that the workers needed to work until 9 p.m. Normal working hours at the factory are from 7:20 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Labour rights activists said that the working environment in the factory was poor, and the workers should not be forced to work long hours.

Last Updated ( Wednesday, 09 March 2011 18:42 )  

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