Garment workers call for more strikes if demands not met

25 February 2015
Garment workers call for more strikes if demands not met
Workers shout slogans as they protest outside their factory after a clash with police at Shwepyithar Industrial zone in Yangon, Myanmar, February 20, 2015. Myanmar police dismantled the protest sites and several people were injured during the clash between protesters and policemen. Thousands of workers are demanding a raise in their basic salary at the industrial zone. Photo: Nyein Chan Naing/EPA

Myanmar garment workers demonstrating over pay and factory conditions threatened to continue strikes unless their demands are met and authorities release two of their representatives detained earlier this month, according to Radio Free Asia on February 24.
The promise to continue the nearly month-long strikes against Costec International, E-Land Myanmar and Ford Glory Garment in Yangon’s Shwepyithar Industrial Zone, came despite government warnings on Monday that “action” would be taken against protesters.
What action the government plans to take was not spelled out.
The companies are reportedly owned by Chinese and South Korean firms.
One worker told RFA that the strikes would continue unless factories granted a wage increase and authorities freed two protest leaders, who are facing public disturbance charges.
The protestors are calling for an increase of K30,000 [US$30] in their basic monthly salary.
Garment sector workers – normally female - typically work six days a week, 13 hours a day for around K80,000. Over 200,000 people work in Myanmar’s garment factories.