News Release Daw Aung San Suu Kyi asked migrant workers in Thailand to unite, protect their rights and be responsible for their duties.
Today (30 May 2012), 8.30 AM Daw Aung San Suu Kyi visited migrant worker communities in Samut Sakorn Province, where over 300,000 migrant workers resided. Aung San Suu Kyi visited workers in the shrimp market community and the learning center of the Migrant Workers Rights Network (M.W.R.N). Thirty representatives of migrant workers, representative of Thai trade union, the Human Rights and Development Foundation (HRDF) and the Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University, co-organizers hosted a reception for her visit.
Aung San Suu Kyi, invited the representatives of 30 migrant workers for a close discussion to present migrant worker’s challenges in Thailand. Migrant workers representatives presented problems to access accident compensation and the workmen’s compensation fund, exploitation from brokers in Nationality Verification (NV) process, human trafficking problems, and access to education for migrant workers’s children in Thailand. They also mentioned that many workers underwent the NV process but they were not illegible for social security system. Migrant workers also petitioned Suu Kyi about crime victims, such as rapes and robberies. Suu Kyi acknowledged the issue and urged migrant workers in Thailand to about their rights and take responsibilities. She said migrants should unite and give mutual support. She said to bring this information to talk to the governments of the two countries to seek for solutions.
After listening to the problems of migrant workers through their representatives, Suu Kyi appeared for a speech to those who greeted her trip. Suu Kyi said she was aware of the issues migrant workers in Thailand have to endure and will try her best to address those problems. She requested the migrant workers to unite, form their communities to disseminate knowledge, exchange information about their duties and protect their rights. She will give them full support.
Ms. Preeyaporn Khankumnerd, the director of Migrant Justice Program (MJP) under the Human Rights and Development Foundation said, “Daw Aung San Suu Kyi’s trip to Thailand is the first trip from Myanmar after 15 years of a house arrest. She decided to visit the migrant workers’ community on the first day of her arrival. It is an auspicious moment that she, as well as the international communities, pay attention to the living conditions and human rights of migrants. I sincerely hope that it will lead to solutions to their problems, domestic policy development and international collaboration for the protection of the rights of migrant workers from Myanmar and other countries, according to international standards.”
Human Rights and Development Foundation (HRDF)