Rep’s sack­ing protested

The Phnom Penh Post - - NATIONAL - Yon Sineat

NEARLY 50 em­ploy­ees work­ing at a bev­er­age-can fac­tory be­long­ing to Crown Hold­ings Inc yes­ter­day protested the sack­ing of their union rep­re­sen­ta­tive, who was fired on Tues­day fol­low­ing the es­tab­lish­ment of a union at the end of July.

The pro­test­ers gath­ered at the fac­tory in Preah Si­hanouk prov­ince to ask for in­ter­ven­tion from the Min­istry of Labour. An Rama, a Cam­bo­dian Labour Con­fed­er­a­tion co­or­di­na­tor, said work­ers had reg­is­tered a union at the end of July. On Au­gust 17, 56 work­ers sub­mit­ted a com­plaint to the min­istry, de­mand­ing bet­ter con­di­tions, and sub­mit­ted an­other on Septem­ber 1 fol­low­ing the min­istry’s in­ac­tion. On Tues­day, the min­istry called in union leader Sing Sao for clar­i­fi­ca­tion, and upon re­turn­ing to the fac­tory he was sus­pended.

“The com­pany claimed he didn’t have per­mis­sion to be ab­sent, so the com­pany sus- pended him,” Rama said. “The Labour Min­istry said we didn’t reg­is­ter the union.”

Ac­cord­ing to Deputy Pro­vin­cial Gover­nor Seng Huon, the min­istry con­tends that only 41 work­ers, not 56, sub­mit­ted their thumbprints on a com­plaint – be­low the re­quired rep­re­sen­ta­tion of 30 per­cent of work­ers to be recog­nised by the min­istry.

He said the work­ers had be­gun with a slew of re­quests – for the com­pany to pay dou­ble salary if it asked em­ploy­ees to work on off days, for long-term clean­ers to get per­ma­nent con­tracts and re­ceive ma­ter­nity ben­e­fits, and for work­ers to not have pay docked if they re­sign.

Yes­ter­day they called for the min­istry to in­ves­ti­gate the union leader’s sack­ing and for the com­pany not to dis­crim­i­nate against union­ists. Seng Huon said the min­istry would start work­ing on the fir­ing and dis­crim­i­na­tion com­plaint to­day, and would ad­dress the other is­sues be­fore the Pchum Ben hol­i­day.

SUP­PLIED

Work­ers stand in protest out­side Cam­brew’s Crown Beer fac­tory yes­ter­day in Si­hanoukville.

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