Migrants win case for overdue pay
CHIANG RAI: The provincial labour office is conducting an inquiry after more than 40 Myanmar migrant workers at a banana plantation complained they had not received their wages for months.
Forty-five workers rallied at the labour office on Monday seeking help. They said many of them have not been paid for more than six months.
A worker, who asked not to be named, said the plantation employed about 80 legally registered workers from Myanmar.
The worker said he had been working at the plantation in Phaya Mengrai district for three years. The company had experienced financial problems since June when late wage payments began, he said.
Early this month, the plantation laid off several workers without giving any reason, the worker said.
He said his employers owed him 27,500 baht in wages and his wife, 12,000 baht. He said he needed the money to pay for food and other necessities. The couple have been forced to buy things on credit, which is drying up as they can't pay off debts.
The plantation company has repeatedly missed wage payment deadlines, said Korawan Jongsathapornpan, a provincial labour and social welfare official. She said an inquiry was underway. At least two of the plantation's shareholders are Chinese nationals.
The inquiry found the business was struggling financially. One shareholder was in jail while another was sick, causing a liquidity crunch. The office ordered the firm to pay outstanding wages by Jan 15.