Workers unite against textile factory over SSF 'failure'

Workers unite against textile factory over SSF 'failure'

Workers at Nakhon Luang Thungthao Nylon Co have lunch during a protest against the textile factory at the Labour Ministry on Wednesday. (Photo by Pattrapong Chatpattarasill)
Workers at Nakhon Luang Thungthao Nylon Co have lunch during a protest against the textile factory at the Labour Ministry on Wednesday. (Photo by Pattrapong Chatpattarasill)

Textile workers in Nakhon Pathom have petitioned the Labour Ministry to take action against their factory for allegedly failing to pay contributions to the Social Security Fund (SSF), making them ineligible for state financial help.

Nakhon Luang Thungthao Nylon Co, aka Capital Rayon co, has allegedly not paid money into the SSF for seven months, from August last year to February this year, company’s worker union president Surin Pimpa claimed as she led group members to the Labour Protection and Welfare Department on Wednesday.

At least 10 retired workers have seen their pension rights under the SSF suspended as the Social Security Office told them to “wait” for talks between officials and the company to settle the issue, retired worker Taengon Em-ot, 61, said.

The company was also accused of delaying payment of mandatory compensation to the retirees and "did not pay wages on time or paid only half of the salaries".

“Now both Thai and migrant workers are in trouble. We still have to pay rent and daily expenses,” Ms Surin, a retired worker, said.

She said that besides the retirement compensation, the retiree group hoped to receive about 30,000 baht from their SSF contributions to the pension fund, which they need to survive. They have been unable to claim the money because the company apparently failed to make payments to the SSF.  

One migrant worker complained she was forced to borrow money to cover her expenses.

Orders for some workers to take leave without pay and others to be furloughed in some factory sections during the Covid-19 pandemic have been also “orally issued without a written statement”, Ms Surin claimed.

Labour Protection and Welfare Department chief Apinya Sujarittanan said an investigation into the SSF contributions and other financial issues was underway.

The probe will also examine whether current workers are eligible to receive 62% of their daily wages from the SSF if they are furloughed as a result of Covid-19. If a firm adopts a work-without-pay policy, it is required to pay at least 75% of salaries, he said.

According to Ms Surin, the company claimed it has no money to buy raw materials and has sold a lot of machines. However, the firm has not clearly announced whether it would shut down the business, she said.

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