garment workers
Street vendors’ carts in front of a factory in Phnom Penh. (Hun Sirivadh/VOD)

Garments Slump Spills Over to Surrounding Businesses, Residents

Street vendors of all stripes around Phnom Penh manufacturing districts say their small businesses are becoming nearly impossible to sustain, one of the many knock-on effects of a decline in the country’s garment industry amid the global pandemic.

Workers protest in front of the E.U. office in Phnom Penh on September 7, 2020. (Hy Chhay/VOD)

Labor Protests Draw Thousands of Workers, Warning Issued to Unionist

Thousands of workers took to the streets in multiple protests this week over unpaid wages from suspended factories as well as grievances related to benefits, as the Labor Ministry issued a warning against one unionist alleging an illegal strike and a man was detained while photographing a rally.

Workers from garment factories Dignity Knitter Limited and Eco Base march to submit a petition to the Kandal Provincial Court over unsettled compensation claims on July 13, 2020. (Hy Chhay/VOD)

Kandal Governor Promises Solution to Monthslong Garment Worker Dispute

The Kandal provincial governor on Monday vowed to find a solution for workers of the Dignity Knitter and Eco Base garment factories after hundreds of workers marched to Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Takhmao home to protest the factories’ failure to compensate out-of-work employees.

A garment factory worker in Cambodia (ILO)

Garment Industry, Union Seek Help as Exports Slide Amid Covid-19

With sinking exports and suspended production lines, the garment industry and a labor union continued appeals for help from the government and others this week, respectively renewing calls for a delayed partial withdrawal of trade benefits and quicker processing of worker payouts.

Employees of the New Best Global Textile factory in Kampong Speu province protest at the Labor Ministry in Phnom Penh on June 29, 2020, calling for compensation and other benefits. (Hy Chhay/VOD)

Garment Workers Demand Payout Amid Pandemic Factory Closures

Employees of the New Best Global Textile factory in Kampong Speu province urged the Labor Ministry on Monday to compel the company to compensate workers as they said the factory building’s owner had already rented out the property.

Former Dignity Knitter workers rest under a tent in front of the closed garment factory in Takhmao City on May 1, 2020. (Hun Sirivadh/VOD)

Awaiting Payouts, Fired Garment Workers Keep Watch Outside Factory

About 100 fired garment workers have been guarding their closed factory in shifts since mid-January. They aim to ensure the owner does not sell equipment left inside and disappear with the money before paying workers what they are owed by the end of May.

Workers travel by truck from a factory along National Road 5 in Phnom Penh’s Russei Keo District on April 22, 2020. (So Chey Oudom/VOD)

Close-Quarter Commutes, Covid-19 Risks Leave Garment Workers Worried

Garment factories have taken precautions in an effort to prevent Covid-19 from spreading down assembly lines. But workers and labor advocates say they are concerned the cramped trucks that ferry workers to factories could be potential hot spots for infection.