Thai Union and LPN Organise Training Session for Employees on Education Rights to Encourage Migrant Children to Enroll in School

Mr. Sompong Srakaew, Director of LPN Foundation provides valuable information on importance of education for the future of the children to Thai Union employees at the Samut Sakhon facility.

Mr. Prasarn Sarawong, Principal of Wat Suttharam School, Samut Sakhon province where one of the Thai Union’s Child Care Centres is located, describes to the employees the joyous and fulfilling atmosphere the children would experience in the classroom.

Samut Sakhon, Thailand – 3 November 2015 – Thai Union Group PCL., in collaboration with the Labour Rights Promotion Network Foundation (LPN), recently organised an educational rights training workshop for Thai Union employees in order to create awareness about their children’s rights with regards to education and ensure their understanding about the school enrollment process in Thailand.

Mr. Thiraphong Chansiri, President & CEO of Thai Union Group PCL., said, “We believe that education is the foundation of success in life. For this reason, Thai Union has invested in Child Care Centres to facilitate quality pre-school education and provide a safe environment for Thai and migrant children in Samut Sakhon community. We have already established two Thai Union Child Care Centres – at Wat Si Suttharam School and at Wat Sirimongkol School and plan to open three more schools in the next two years. Each school now houses more than 200 children. We believe it is important to raise awareness about the importance of formal education to our employees who are parents so that they know their rights and choose to support their children to go to school.”

Due largely to the fact that many migrant workers are uncertain about the education procedures in Thailand and often encourage their children to work in order to provide extra income, a large number of migrant children lack access to formal schooling. This deprives many children of their rights to education in Thailand. Thai Union recognises this problem and has attempted to address it through the initiation of a training program for its’ migrant employees.

The employee education rights training program has been organised in collaboration with the LPN foundation. LPN supported the program through the provision of facilitators who helped to provide information to the employees attending about their children’s rights with regards to accessing the Thai schooling system, letting them know how to enroll their children and real life stories about how children are lured into forced child labour if they are left to their own devices.

Mr. Sompong Srakaew, Director of LPN Foundation said, “Thai Union has long been collaborating with LPN and we have seen their commitment to drive positive change with regards to labour issues and ensuring the prevention of child labour.

At present, Thailand has improved in rankings on child labour handling in the eyes of the international community, but we cannot be complacent as there is a large number of migrant children in Samut Sakhon who are at risk for falling prey to child labour, partly because some parents want their children to work in order to provide extra income.

Therefore, in order to drive positive change, improve the overall quality of life for migrant workers and their families and ensure the complete eradication of child labour, awareness and understanding must be created amongst parents of migrant children about their basic human rights and rights to education and healthcare.

Such a program is already being implemented by Thai Union and looks set to be the best practice for positive change and image building at both the provincial and national level in the near future.”

Bi-monthly sessions of the Employee Education Rights Training Program will be held to make sure that all migrant employees in all Thai Union facilities are fully informed about these issues. To date, more than 200 migrant employees have participated in the program.