Thai textile factory ordered to pay 19 million baht in overdue wages to workers

Photo via Facebook/Boonlert Saengphan

Textile factory workers in Thailand’s central Samut Prakan province are set to receive 19.33 million baht in unpaid wages, plus 15% interest, after labour authorities intervened on their behalf. The factory operator has been ordered to expedite the payment process for approximately 109 workers who had not received their full wages between July 2020 and April this year.

These workers are part of a group of 115 employees who filed complaints with labour inspectors, claiming they were only partially paid by their employer. The employer also refused to lay them off, which would have entitled them to full severance pay, according to Labour Minister Suchart Chomklin. Among the complainants are two individuals who were due to retire and should have received 354,433 baht in compensation.

The issue came to light when the affected employees staged a protest outside Samut Prakan’s City Hall, urging the provincial governor to help them secure their unpaid wages. The factory’s business was negatively impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020, leading to reduced working days and partial payment of wages, as reported by local labour authorities following an investigation.

The textile factory, located in Phra Samut Chedi district, was forced to shut down on April 18 after its electricity supply was disconnected due to unpaid bills.

“As a result, these people can no longer work there, but the employer keeps paying them only part of what they are owed,” said Suchart Chomklin.

Six additional workers filed petitions for assistance with the labour authorities on May 25, and their cases are still being processed, he said. If the employer does not pay the demanded amount by the deadline, the affected workers can apply for preliminary financial support from the Ministry’s employee support fund, Bangkok Post reported.

In March this year, there was another incident involving a factory in Thailand not properly paying its workers.

After catching heat for what critics considered an incomplete investigation, Thai police filed criminal charges against a factory used by Tesco. The factory was alleged to have covered its tracks by opening fake bank accounts where they “paid” the legal wage, though the workers were paid separately with cash.

Central Thailand NewsThailand NewsThailand Protest News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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