Their demands focused on relief funds promised by the government to which the workers are entitled to under Section 33 of the Social Security Act. Section 33 of the act stipulates that people forced to stop working through no fault of their own are to be given 62% of their daily wages based on a maximum monthly salary of B15,000 for a maximum of 90 days.
Among those gathered in front of the office were workers holding placards saying “How has this delay happened? People are in trouble, do you know?” and “It is our right to ask, It is a right that we are supposed to receive!”
The protesters said they had come to the office to “ask for clarification” from the Social Security Office in Kathu.
They said they wanted to know when they will receive the payments because many of them are unable to survive without money to buy daily necessities.
Apichet Poonsonga explained that he had an entertainment venue on Bangla Rd that was forced to close by order of the government.
Representing his staff yesterday, he said, “We sent the documents two months ago but we still have not received any payments.”
Pairat Thanomwong, president of Phuket Human Resources Club, said he was seeking some sort of explanation as to why the payments were taking so long to process.
While the protesters were gathered in front of the office, more people left out of work due to the COVID crisis arrived to file their own applications to receive unemployment payments.
One of the officers from the Social Security Office finally ventured outside to meet the protesters to offer an explanation, reported the Phuket office of the Public Relations Department (PR Phuket).
However, exactly what explanation was offered was not reported.
Regardless, after finally meeting with the official, Mr Pairat said, “We know that SSO officers work hard, so we brought them some flowers to offer them some encouragement.”