Chiang Mai (Mizzima) – Two days prior to the deadline for a migrant to register for a work permit in Thailand, more than 500,000 Burmese migrant workers have registered, according to human rights activists.
“Up to Monday evening, more than 490,000 Burmese workers have registered,” Andy Hall, an adviser with the Bangkok-based Human Rights and Development Foundation, told Mizzima.
The registration period runs from June 15 to Thursday. Officially, a worker must spend 3,980 baht to register, but most Burmese workers registered through brokers at a cost of 5,000 to 7,000 baht (about US$ 220).
Workers were required to submit a testimonial by an employer and a medical certificate.
Estimates place the number of Burmese workers in Thailand at more than 2 million, but only about 1.5 million have temporary passports or legal work permits, according to workers’ rights activists. The Ministry of Labour has ordered police not to arrest migrant workers during the registration period.