Workers expect overtime
A survey conducted by the Institute of Workers and Trade Unions – Viet Nam General Confederation of Labor in November 2022 showed that workers’ working time (CN) from 8 hours has decreased to 7.25 hours/day and there is no shift increase. In the first quarter of 2023, many companies continued to cut production due to a shortage of orders, causing fewer and fewer jobs in the industry. No overtime means workers only receive basic pay. At this level, they can barely afford to live.
Lack of work, reduced income.
After the shift, Mr. Nguyen Viet Phuong (21 years old), an employee of Phu My Toan Import-Export Production Trading Co., Ltd (Binh Chanh District, Ho Chi Minh City), returned to the inn. The company was only 1 km from the inn, but the back of his shirt was sweaty from the heat.
The room did not have a lock on the door because, according to Mr. Phuong, there was no valuable furniture inside. At the age of 16, he moved to the city, he used to do all kinds of jobs in Long An before an acquaintance introduced him to his current job. Previously, when the company’s orders were stable, Mr. Phuong had to work 4 hours a day, with a total monthly income of more than VND 8 million. This is a relatively good number, enough to cover living expenses and send home to support his family. “In recent months, due to low orders, Sun has very few jobs. Not only for Sundays, but also on weekdays. The company also arranges for Sun to come back earlier than usual. No overtime, please which reduces the monthly income. 1-2 million dong. If I don’t spend well, I will fall short before and after,” Phuong said.
After sending her son to Soc Trang to be cared for by his parents, Ms. Phan Thi Thuy An applied for a job with a company in District 12, Ho Chi Minh City. Taking the job at the right time, the business had a hard time getting in order, so her income in the first 2 months was only 6-7 million VND per month. Entering the third month, revenue decreased to VND 5 million due to less overtime. Regularly taking 2 days off on weekends due to a work break, Ms. An takes advantage of her return to her hometown to visit her children. Each round trip costs at least 400,000 VND. “I heard my colleagues tell me that they worked overtime into the night. I hope the company will overcome difficulties soon and have many orders for us to work overtime,” Ms. An said.
In the same neighborhood as Ms. An is Mr. Tran Van Son (33, from Ha Tinh), a company specializing in furniture. The son’s wife is an employee of the Viet Hung Garment Company Limited (12th District, Ho Chi Minh City). Previously, if there were overtime, the couple’s total income exceeded 15 million VND per month, but now it has decreased by almost half due to the shortage of jobs. “There are days when I only work 2 hours and then come back. I have a herniated disc and I can’t sit for long, so I can’t sign up to ride a motorcycle taxi to earn more. I hope the orders from the company pick up “. have regular jobs.” – Said Mr. Son.
The company is short on work, so Mr. Nguyen Viet Phuong returns to his room earlier than usual.
In recent months, due to the difficulties of the company, the income of Mr. Bui Vu Luan (from Ben Tre) kept going up and down. At one point, the company was late in paying his salary, so he had to borrow from his relatives to cover living expenses.
Mr. Luan’s wife is a member of PouYuen Co., Ltd. is no better. In the first months of the year, due to small orders, there were almost no overtime hours, even short hours. The meager income makes life very difficult for him and his wife, as they have to raise two small children. Although they tried to get by, in the end they had to send their children back to their hometown to take care of their grandparents. “The price of essential items increased, which caused the cost of living to increase as well. Sometimes I had to call home to borrow money from relatives to cover living expenses, especially the education of my two children. Send to my grandchildren to my hometown is something that my husband and I don’t want, but I have no choice,” said Luan.
Difficulties surrounded many industries, with some workers who had left their jobs now finding their way back to the factory, hoping to work in a stable environment. However, this is not easy. Three years ago, Mr. Luong Quoc Tuan (37 years old, Ho Chi Minh City) decided to quit his job at a construction company and pool all the money he had saved to open a snail shop. However, the store opened for a few months when the COVID-19 epidemic broke out and had to close. Losing everything, Mr. Tuan went to work as a bricklayer on a daily wage. Due to the erratic nature of the job and unstable income, he contacted his old company to apply for a job. However, the response he received was to wait for the company to stabilize before calling. “Applying for a job right now is extremely difficult, so I just have to go back to my job as a bricklayer,” Mr. Tuan said.
Nearly 5 billion VND to support workers who lost their jobs and reduce working hours
Implement policies to support union members and employees whose work hours are reduced or their employment contracts terminated due to reduced business or reduced orders pursuant to Decision 6696/QD-TLD, Hoc Mon District LDLD. , Ho Chi Minh City has provided support to 1,640 employees whose working hours have been reduced at Sambu Vina Sports Co., Ltd and A&T Machining Investment Trading Co., Ltd. The total amount of support is more than VND 1.6 billion.
As of April 21, the Ho Chi Minh City Labor Confederation has approved 3,333 cases for a total amount of VND 4.89 billion. The support money has been transferred directly to the employees by the top union. Currently, the Ho Chi Minh City Federation of Labor urges the units to continue supplementing and completing the file so that the support money can reach the employees soon.
M. Chi – H. Dao