As part of the COVID-19 relief effort from the Thailand government, yesterday (20 April), about 8,000 workers whose work was affected by the COVID-19 outbreak received their first compensation payment from the Social Security Office (SSO).

According to a report by Bangkok Post, Thailand’s Labour Minister Mr Chatu Mongol Sonakul said compensation payments can now be made following the announcement of a ministerial regulation concerning the impact of Covid-19 on workers insured under Section 33 of the Social Security Act.

While 11mn workers are likely to be affected by the outbreak, the exact number of people who need help should become clearer in a few weeks, he added.

As of yesterday, about 800,000 formal workers had applied for compensation and 50% have been vetted and were considered qualified, Bangkok Post understands from Thotsaphon Kritwongwiman, secretary-general of the SSO.

He added that the SSO is waiting for confirmation from the employers of other applicants, adding payment will be made as soon as verification is completed.

As reported previously, those who have faced unemployment “by force” will receive 62% of their wages with a maximum compensation period of three months.

Separately, labour organisations have agreed to cancel Labour Day events on May 1 due to the pandemic.

According to Suchart Thailuan, president of the National Congress of Thai Labour, the decision had been reached at a meeting of 15 labour councils, the State Enterprises Workers’ Relations Confederation and representatives of informal workers.

The 4.9mn baht allocated to organise the activities will be returned to the government to fight the outbreak, he said, adding that labour rights advocates will submit proposals to the government which are aimed at improving their quality of life.

The proposals include calls for the government to ratify ILO Conventions No.87 and No.98, which involve the freedom of association, collective bargaining and greater representation.

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Photo / 123RF