JILAF and the International Trade Union Confederation-Thai Council(ITUC-TC) held a labour-management relations and productivity seminar (PROGRESS) in Samutprakan Province in Thailand on October 21–23 with the participation of 24 trade union officers from national centers and enterprise-based unions.
The aims of this PROGRESS seminar are to promote labor-management negotiations through the productivity improvement movement and to establish constructive labour-management relations. It is hoped that participants disseminate the knowledge and experience gained through special texts in the program in their workplaces.
Usually the seminar lasts for four days, but this time it was reorganized because the Thai side requested a three-day seminar. The program consisted basically of sessions on (1) the role and challenges of unions, (2) labour standards and constructive labour-management relations, (3) the productivity movement and unions, and (4) labour-management consultations and collective bargaining.
In a keynote speech, Mr. Pongsilamanee, a doctor of economics and former vice-chairman of the State Enterprise Workers Relations Confederation (SERC) of Thailand, commented that amid the advance of globalization, improvement of the lives of workers was lagging and the informal economy was expanding. Therefore, he stressed, it was necessary for trade unions to understand these conditions and implement activities accordingly.
In the 5S patrol practice (see below), the participants visited a plant of YS PUND Co., Ltd., which manufactures metal welding parts for automobiles. Here they learned good examples of the 5S principles and made suggestions for improvements to the company management. The proposals concerning sorting, setting things in order, and cleaning were appropriate and confirmed the participants’ high level of proficiency.
The participants made such comments as “I think constructive labour-management relations, in which unions not only make demands but also cooperate, should be the crux of union policy,” thus confirming that they had fully grasped the aims of the program, which are to build cooperative relations relating to the productivity movement and constructive labour-management relations. Hopefully they will disseminate the program activities in their own workplaces from now on.
※PROGRESS = PROGram on Role of Trade Unions in Empowerment and Strategic Steps to Decent Work
※The 5S principles refer to the first letters of five Japanese words: seiri (sort), seiton (set/put things in order), seiso (shine/clean), seiketsu (standardize), and shitsuke (sustain/discipline).
|10/21||Sun||Seminar (Day 1)|
|10/22||Mon||Seminar (Day 2)|
|10/23||Tue||Seminar (Day 3)|
|10/24||Wed||Seminar (Day 4)|