ILO violation 87
: When workers at Japanese-owned NTN Manufacturing decided to form a union, they faced a barrage of management surveillance, harassment, and ultimately firings. In early January, as the core members of the union organising committee at the factory sought assistance from the Thailand Autoworkers Federation (TAW), management sent spies to watch the TAW union hall. NTN workers seen in the area were immediately called in by the NTN personnel director, and repeatedly interrogated over the course of the following week about whether a union was being formed. The Japanese owner publicly opposed the union in factory-wide meeting the day before the union organisational meeting and elections were due to be held on 8 February. When the workers went ahead with their meeting, two staff from the personnel department were seen noting which workers arrived to take part. On the morning of 9 February, NTN management summarily fired seven of the newly elected union committee members based on the facetious claim that there was a financial crisis at the company. The seven fired workers were the union’s bargaining representatives, designated to enter into negotiations on the union’s demands which were put forward to management that day.
The union appealed against the firings to the Labour Relations Committee, which ruled the company’s actions clearly constituted anti-union discrimination. Meanwhile, TAW mounted a strong and effective campaign, targeting NTN’s customers among auto assemblers. NTN management finally conceded, and reinstated the seven union leaders with back pay. By the end of the year, the union had successfully concluded a collective agreement with the employer.: Thailand