(KPL) Ninety seven employees of the Ratch Lao Services who work as mechanical and maintenance staff at the lignite-fired thermal power plant of the Hongsa Power Company in Hongsa district, Xayaboury Province submitted their letters to resign on March 28, after their requests for salary raises and welfare benefits were not considered.
The Ratch Lao Service on Friday said it had welcomed the requests and was ready to negotiate with all parties to find a better way out.
An unnamed employee said that the 97 employees have written letters requesting salary raises and better welfare packages to the Ratch Lao Serivice but it appeared that there was no clarification on the issue and no prompt response to the requests, and as a result they were relatively disappointed.
The employees are requesting 8 things: increased salary and food allowance, home visits, clearance, shift, sick leave, work leave, and normal monthly work leave. They want their requests addressed before they can sign new contracts in June.
They said that the company recruited foreign workers for the mechanical and maintenance domain who appeared to have less experience than Lao staff who had been working in the area for a couple of years, yet the foreign workers were given higher salary and welfare benefits. These made them feel cheatedand exploited.
The company has recently announced that as of June 2017, the maintenance staff will have their monthly holiday decreased from one week per month to four days per month (every Sunday), making the workers realize that they are supposed to work harder and have shorter holidays while their salaries are not raised.
“At the moment, the company is considering all the requests so that we can collectively find solutions, but right now we cannot tell how the requested things will be addressed and we believe that all problems will be concluded unanimously,” said Mr Bounthanong, Executive President of the Ratch Lao Service.