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Labour Minister Consults Royal Thai Police on Foreign Worker Exploitation

The conference on solutions to migrant worker issues was attended by Labour Minister General Sirichai Distakul, Permanent Secretary of Labour M.L. Puntrik Smiti and Deputy Permanent Secretary and Acting Director-General for the Department of Employment, Mr. Waranon Pitiwan. The parties consulted with Commissioner of the Royal Thai Police, Police General Jakthip Chaijinda and Mr. Sakchai Taenghor, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Provincial Administration from the Ministry of Interior, on news regarding exploitation of migrant workers.

The meeting's participants gave consensus to not allowing foreign workers to change employers in the event that they are working in locations other than that permitted, unless the employer has deceased, shut down the business, terminated the employee, has harmed the employee, not complied with the law or the employee works in severely dangerous conditions. The meeting also agrees on holders of the pink card in 2 industries, that is labour-intensive and household jobs, and also approval for employers to request additional permitted locations of work for employees under necessary conditions. The request can be made to the central registrar or the provincial employment office to help issue of migrants working cross-regions and exploitation from officials.

For foreign workers on the boarder employed for fruit harvesting in Chantaburi and Rayong, the Ministry of Interior has considered measures to allow migrants to access nearby regions. The Ministry of Labour, Ministry of Interior and Royal Thai Police will spread awareness amongst employers, employee and officers in relevant units in order to prevent exploitation of migrant workers. For workers returning home for the Songkran festivities, the meeting gave consensus to the Ministry of Interior to announce exemption for pink card holders, who are required to report their traveling period. The Ministry of Labour will present the meeting's conclusions to the 5th Commission for National Reform and Administration for consideration before proposal to the Cabinet.

Source: Ministry of Labour