Automotive company to sack well-known labour activist

The Labour Court has been asked to allow the sacking of a labour activist who has won an award for promoting labour rights, for reasons of absenteeism and incompetence.

The IT Forging (Thailand) Co., Ltd, an automotive manufacturer in the eastern province of Rayong, submitted a petition to the Region 2 Labour Court in Chonburi Province to request permission to fire Boonyuen Sukmai, a labour activist who was awarded the 2014 Somchai Neelapaijit Prize for his work in promoting labour rights.

As Boonyuen is a member of the company’s employee committee, the employer is required to obtain court permission to fire him.

In the petition drafted in December 2015, the company argued that Boonyuen had violated the company’s code of conduct because he allegedly overspent his leave of absence and claimed that he is incapable of performing his work.   

The employers added that they do not need to compensate Boonyuen for sacking him because he violated the company’s code of conduct.

Boonyuen has been known for his advocacy of labour rights since 1992.

Between 1993 and 1995, he was a member of the Labour Protection Department of the National Labour Council before serving in several other posts as a regional labour union leader in Thailand’s Eastern Seaboard.

In addition to his activism with the labour unions, he opens his house to give consultations to workers.  

He was elected by the workers as an employee representative on the Social Security Committee of IT Forging in 2014.  


Boonyuen Sookmai (file photo)


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