|Description/subject:|| ||"From inside Burma, a job at sea might seem like a good career move, but many Burmese seamen are finding the voyage anything but smooth sailing.
When the Seafarers Union of Burma (SUB) and the Port Authority of Thailand Workers Union conducted a check of ships harbored in Bangkok last October, they found 18 Burmese crewmembers on board a Taiwanese vessel named the Timber Star with salaries well below International Labor Organization (ILO) standards.
"The ILO minimal standard wage is US $581 a month for a seaman," says Aung Thura, SUB’s assistant general secretary. "On the Timber Star the basic salary is $240, but from that, agents take an extra $100 to $150 for themselves," he adds. According to Aung Thura, three men on board the Timber Star took home only $50 a month.
"When we found out that the crew members weren’t getting ILO standard salaries, we asked the ship’s owner to pay them in full. But the ship had already left the port," he explains. The SUB is now calling on members from other affiliates of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) to join in an international strike against the owner of the Timber Star..."|