garment workers
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.

A garment worker checks pants in a factory in Cambodia on December 9, 2014 (ILO)

Svay Rieng Garment Factory Suspends 2,000 Workers

More than 2,000 garment workers have been suspended from a factory in Svay Rieng province for two months, with the company saying it cut employees because the factory had received no orders from buyers amid the Covid-19 economic downturn.

Workers mostly stay in their rented rooms during a self-isolation period, coming out occasionally to buy food, at a block of dorms where garment workers live in Phnom Penh’s Choam Chao commune on April 22, 2020. (Danielle Keeton-Olsen/VOD)

Workers Isolate in Dorms After Stay-at-Home Order

Workers who were told to isolate at home as a Covid-19 precaution said they would accept orders to take time off. But with more garment factories suspending production due to reduced orders, some workers worry their leave will be extended indefinitely.