Triumph workers seek help from Swiss Embassy

Triumph workers rallied at the Swiss Embassy in Bangkok, making demands through the embassy to Triumph International whose headquarters is located in Switzerland.  After the embassy refused to come out to receive their petition, the workers read out the demands, burned the petition and left.

On July 24, over a thousand workers who are to be laid off by Body Fashion (Thailand) Ltd, a subsidiary of Triumph International, marched from Ratchadamri Rd along Rama I Rd to Wireless Rd where the Embassy of Switzerland is located.

At the Embassy, the workers demanded to speak to Ambassador Rodolphe Samuel Imhoof, but were met with his first secretary instead.  Three representatives of the workers were allowed to enter the embassy to talk with the secretary.

The talk yielded hardly any results as the embassy said it had to check whether Triumph International was registered in Switzerland, and it was not sure whether it could bring the employee to the table.

The embassy refused to come out to receive the workers’ petition, but asked the workers to send their representatives to submit the petition inside the premises.

So the workers decided to read the letter in Thai and English through a megaphone, and burned the petition in protest.  They finally left for their protest site in front of the Triumph factory in Bang Phli, Samut Prakan.

The workers are demanding that the Body Fashion Company cancel its plan to lay off 1,959 workers, disclose information in accordance with the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, consult the labour union regarding policies which would affect the welfare of the workers, and adhere to the Triumph conglomerate’s own Code of Conduct which recognizes the importance of human rights protection.

A meeting between the Triumph labour union and Body Fashion is set to take place soon at the Office of Labour Protection and Welfare in Samut Prakan.    

Source: 
<p>http://www.prachatai.com/journal/2009/07/25194</p>