Monday, 16 July 2012

Misery in “Little Myanmar”

The Nation and Eleven Media have a joint article on conditions for migrant workers in Mahachai:
The area is officially under the control of the Thai police department. Migrant workers have to pay a fee to Thai police officers monthly to avoid arrest. Police officers usually charge Bt800 per month for a shop owner who does not have any verification on hand. A migrant worker can get arrested easily by police who make up stories about their illegal activities. When that happens, a price must be negotiated between the worker and police. The price could be anywhere between Bt4,500 and Bt25,000. Commonly trumped-up charges by police include the playing of illegal three-digit lotteries and drug-related offences...
  • 2 million Myanmar workers in Thailand are legal and 700,000-800,000 have become legal through the nationality verification process.
  • Almost 1 million others are illegal.
  • 120,000 Myanmar migrants are working in Samut Sakhon province legally.
  • Tens of thousands of other Myanmar workers there are illegal, but 80,000 are joining the nationality verification process to become legal workers.

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