Special report: Labour conference

Special report: Labour conference - by Asiper, November 26, 2004
A seminar on “New dimension of Thai Labour “ was held at at Miracle Grand Convention Hall on November 14, 2004. It was organized by the Labour Commission, House of Representatives, the Social Security office, the Chamber of Commerce of Thailand, the Industrial Congress of Thailand, the Bank Congress of Thailand and labour organizations.
All of them talked about Globalization, WTO and FTA--forces that cannot be resisted. Thailand has to concentrate on product quality for competition, but workers cannot be neglected. They must have good quality of life also. Workers will be happy if they have good security. Everybody have to learn from the news information. Employees and government must think and cooperate with employers. The government should have a policy to protect people moving from rural areas to the city and pay more attention to unemployment security.
Only one female worker representative, Wilaiwan Saetea, said the workers are still violated. For example, women workers who get pregnant will be laid off. Some factories do not pay workers the minimum wage. There is also sexual harassment at the workplace. Privatization should be stopped. Women should have the opportunity to participate in every sector of work and there should be a child care center in the factory. She asks that TRT fulfill these demands.
Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra came to give a speech in the afternoon at the conference because he has a meeting in the morning at parliament to make merit. After his speech, some workers gave him folded origami papers for the southern people. The PM said now it will be more than 62 million birds to be dropped on December 5.
Wilaiwan Saetea, chairperson of the Women Worker Unity Group, asked him to fulfill the Thai Rak Thai party promise of child care centers for women worker in the workplace. Thaksin gave her the hope and told her to survey how many places they want , where to set it up, and if they should have a baby sitter or nursemaid. If they can give him the information, he said he will create it.
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