Pattaya Daily News

07 December 2012 :: 15:12:45 pm 69185

Meyer Company Workers Protest Miserly Bonus

More than 3,000 employees of Meyer Industry Co., Ltd. staged a protest over the company’s stingy 1-month bonus pay for 20 years of service. In response, the company threatened to relocate their factory to China. The Meyer Laem Chabang factory is a major producer of kitchenware.
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LAEM CHABANG – December 6, 2012 [Pattaya Daily News]; At 6 p.m., more than 3,000 employees of the Meyer Industry Co., Ltd. joined together to block the road of the Laem Chabang 3 industrial estate to protest the company’s bonus payments. The company is located at 38/9 Moo 5, Tambon Thoong Sukhala, Amphur Sriracha, Chonburi province.

The protestors waved posters blaming their employer for underpaying them. They also made announcement and speeches through a loudspeaker on a pickup truck. This is the second time that workers are protesting.

The first protest was held on November 28, led by nine worker representatives: Mr. Jadej Hongthong, Mr. Supoj Thapmongkol, Mr. Chalee Hermkhunthod, Mr. Wallop Janpetch, Mr. Sakda Kengmanee, Mr. Nikorn Pholyeam, Mr. Theeraphan Roongreung, Mr. Rewat Wijob, and Mr. Somporn Kwannate, a consultant of the chairman of the labor union, eastern part.

In the current protest, workers are making three demands: 5 months bonus pay for workers with 20 years of employment, monthly welfare for 1,000 THB, and rental assistance for 1,000 THB.

When the Laem Chabang police station was notified of the protest, Pol. Capt. Vittaya Nittayasook, Deputy Inspector, brought police forces to the scene for public safety.

But the protest was conducted peacefully. The protestors just sat in front of the company and made their presence known to the employers, and cheered the people who were making speeches. The protesting also took place after employees had finished work in the evening, so there were no work stoppages.

A worker spokesman, Mr. Jadej Hongthong, announced the result of negotiations so far with the company. He said the company is now offering 1.25 month of bonus pay for 20 years of service.

The company also informed Mr. Jadej that if the worker protests continued, they may consider moving their production base to China instead. Mr. Jadej said the company’s bonus offer is not acceptable.

The worker representatives will have another negotiation session on December 11. If no satisfactory agreement is reached after the negotiations, the protestors will submit a complaint to the Department of Industrial Works.

The incident that led to the protest was an accident in the factory that resulted in the death of a female employee. But the company’s compensation payment to the woman’s relatives was inadequate, the workers felt. So the opposition against the company kept growing, until the company consented to pay more fair compensation to the woman’s relatives.

However, the unrest sparked by the incident continued. Disgruntled employees calculated the profit of the company, including capital flow. The workers then claimed that the company was making more than 3 billion THB in revenue, but still was offering a meager 1-month bonus salary for 20-year employees.

They said other companies in the Laem Chabang industrial estate are more generous, giving their 20-year employees bonus ranging from 3 to 5 months pay, based on company profits.

The Meyer Industry Co., Ltd. in Thailand is a major producer of kitchenware. It is one of three groups of branch companies in the Meyer Group, which is based in the U.S.A.

The Meyer company invested in Thailand to build a factory to produce stainless steel and Hard Anodice kitchen ware, which has 5 major brands consisting of: Anolon, Circulon, Prestige, Meyer, and Silver Stone.

Reporter : PDN staff   Photo : PDN staff   Category : Community News

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