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Bangla workers plea to health ministry for help

Bangla workers plea to health ministry for help

PHUKET: Ministry of Public Health Deputy Permanent Secretary Dr Phisit Sriprasert was surrounded by workers pleading for help during his inspection of the entertainment venues on Bangla Rd in Patong last night (July 8).

By The Phuket News

Thursday 9 July 2020, 11:29AM

Dr Phisit began his inspection at about 8pm, joined by Kathu District Chief Somprat Prabsongkram and other relevant officials, along with Patong Entertainment Business Association (PEBA) President Weerawit Kreuasombat. 

Along both sides of the street, venue staffers came out holding placards pleading for help from the government, as Patong’s entertainment industry remains devastated by the fallout from the COVID-19 economic crisis and the lack of tourists visiting the town.

The placards featured a host of messages written in Thai, including “Operators can’t live, staff can’t live either”, “Look at us, we’re dying and need help”, “Your red area, but our heart is here” and “What do we get from 4 months closure?” among others

Dr Phisit noted that the entertainment venues on Bangla Rd were showing good cooperation in upholding the measures required of them to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In total, in addition to closing at midnight, pubs, bars and other entertainment venues must comply with 18 health regulations set out especially for the entertainment industry. Operators have been warned to comply with the regulations, introduced under the Emergency Decree, or face being ordered to close.

“As I can see, the venue operators are strictly complying with the government regulations, but only a few establishments are open, as only a small number of tourists are coming here,” Dr Phisit said.


Mr Weerawit pointed out that the Patong nightlife area had been open for just over one week, and that there had been very few visitors.

“A lot of people came on the first day [of reopening, July 1], but that may have been just because people missed the atmosphere of Bangla Rd,” he said.

“At this stage, less than 30 venues are open, but if the economic situation stays bad like this and staff do not get help from the government, some venues may need to be closed permanently, as operators cannot handle the expenses,” he said.

“I have already proposed to the Patong Mayor to open Bangla Rd for local people to sell products, in order to make the atmosphere better and help tuk-tuk and taxi drivers,” Mr Weerawit said.

“And I have already filed a formal request to the central government for help, and asked the Phuket Government to help mediate between landlords and tenants to reduce the rents [being levied] and the cost of utilities,” he added.

“Venue operators cannot get through this situation alone, as operators must face a lot of costs, even though most staff are only asking for the chance to make money from tips, they are not even asking for full salaries.”

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Kurt | 11 July 2020 - 11:06:08

Dr Phisit + Officials held 'inspection' Bangla Rd conveniently at 8 PM. A very safe time to avoid seeing all what is illegal going on there after midnight. Why Dr Phisit not came 01:00 AM? Hehe. All very well orchestrated.  To inspect Bangla Rd at 8 PM, one must be born yesterday to think the public believe in this nonsense.

Kurt | 11 July 2020 - 10:53:52

Red years ago that many bars, 'clubs', souvenir shacks on Bangla Rd are illegal built. To keep illegal 'status quo' owners pay protection money, and indirect the operators pay that in the rent they have to pay to the owners.I am puzzled how a operator gets a business/entertainment license in a illegal premises. Perhaps Forman of PEBA can clarify that?

DeKaaskopp | 11 July 2020 - 00:47:49

@Galong/  And people who can't afford to go home after many years of living here and earning money,should definitely stop talking about unskilled worker on  Bangla Road. Obviously their own skills wasn't good enough too.555

DeKaaskopp | 11 July 2020 - 00:39:13

@Galong/ Soi Bangla is only a disgrace for square people like .... For decades it is/was  an attraction for many people. Without Soi Bangla, Patong would never been as famous as it it or was. Patong is definitely  not remembered for it's Rooti seller or silk shirt seller.

Galong | 10 July 2020 - 18:38:09

@DeKaaskopp Bangla is a disgrace and a stain on Phuket culture. It has nothing to do with my perception of virtue.  By Thai law, most of what goes on their is technically illegal.  Either make it legal or enforce the laws. It's their country, but there are blaring inconsistencies in what is acceptable behavior.

Kurt | 10 July 2020 - 10:25:30

Must say, that many 'unskilled' Bangla  labour' speak better english and are certainly more street wise than most top- and high high ranking Thai officials. The are language wise all skillfull enough to form a new Patong tourist police division.  :-)

DeKaaskopp | 10 July 2020 - 09:35:42

@Galong. Bangla Road must be like Sodom and Gomorrah for you.For the sake of moral decency you would like to shut down the place.Followed by red light districts in Bangkok and Pattaya ? My advice for you: Don't go to those places and let others enjoy it.Just keep staying on the path of  virtue !

LALALA | 10 July 2020 - 09:35:01

Den Alder.... you described it correctly. The problem is that common sense is unfortunately absent in LOS.

Galong | 09 July 2020 - 20:14:31

Bangla is nothing but unskilled labor relying on sleaze and exploitation.  It's one of the tackiest places on earth. This is a stain on Phuket. Shut it down for good.

Den Alder | 09 July 2020 - 19:35:00

Sorry Soi Bangla but you reap what you sow. Overpriced rent, super expensive drinks, greedy staff ... And of course you have a lot of costs when you open your business when nobody is around. It is called common sense.   


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