Long-running dispute settled?

In November 2014 the management of the SL Garment factory finally signed an agreement with the trade union C.CAWDU, after a long-lasting labour rights dispute and non-implementation of last year’s agreement.

In May 2013, a new manager of the SL Garment factory in Phnom Penh, who was also a shareholder and military general, deployed armed military police in the factory. Unionists who protested against this intimidation were fired, and legal cases were filed against them. In response to the conditions and mass dismissals, workers went on strike for nearly four months.

The Clean Clothes Campaign engaged with the main buyers, including Gap, H&M, Inditex (Zara) and C&A, and pushed them to take action and use their leverage with the factory management to end the conflict. An initial agreement between the union and the factory management was reached in December 2013, but never really implemented.

Meanwhile, the workers sought continued international support for their case.

On  17 November 2014, the SL Garment management finally signed an agreement with the union C.CAWDU after a long-lasting dispute. Stakeholders had put pressure on the company, especially regarding the withdrawal of the heavily disputed Military General Mr Meas Sotha, dropping the legal charges against the trade union leaders and the payment of compensation to the striking workers of US$ 300,000. The workers have  received their first instalment, but so far the factory management didn't offically dropped the legal charges against the union leaders and activists.

See also

Cambodian union scores victory at SL Garment

Cambodia Daily: Unions, Bosses Ink Deal to End SL Garment Factory Dispute

Military Police in Garment Factory – Annual Review 2013

Cambodia in the Spotlight page