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Thai Labour Court Gives Triumph Factory the Green Light to Violate Human Rights

On November 27, 2008, a Bangkok labour court gave Body Fashion Thailand, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Triumph International, the green light to dismiss union president Jitra Kotshadej.

The company filed a case against Ms. Kotshadej in relation to her participation, during her private time, in a national television debate wearing a t-shirt saying: ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime.’ The t-shirt refers to the right of people not to stand when the royal anthem is played and the abuse of lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition.

Claiming that her appearance damaged the company’s reputation, Body Fashion Thailand first dismissed Ms. Kotshadej in July 2008 after an earlier labour court hearing.

In response, more than 2000 of her co-workers walked out to demand her reinstatement. After a 45-day strike, the company and the union agreed to a retrial of the dismissal case, since Ms. Kotshadej, who had never been properly informed of the company’s charges against her, was not able to present a defence at the initial labour court hearing.

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* Take action to support the Triumph workers union

Tell Triumph that Fashion Requires Freedom: Reinstate Thai Union President Now!

Body Fashion Thailand, a subsidiary of Triumph International, has fired a union leader for wearing a political t-shirt. Thousands of workers are protesting her unjust dismissal.

On July 30, 2008, a Thai subsidiary of Triumph International, one of the world’s largest makers of intimate apparel, dismissed union president Jitra Kotshadej for wearing an unfashionable t-shirt. She wasn’t wearing the t-shirt at work, and it wasn’t the colour or the design of the t-shirt that caused offence. It was the message that caused the problem: ‘Those who do not stand are not criminals. Thinking differently is not a crime.’ The t-shirt refers to the abuse of lèse-majesté legislation to suppress political opposition and the right of people to refrain from standing during the royal anthem. Ms. Kotshadej was participating in a late night TV debate on women’s reproductive rights when she wore the t-shirt. Despite the fact that she was speaking in her private time and did not claim to speak for Triumph’s Body Fashion (Thailand) Ltd Factory, she was dismissed. Since then, 3000 of her co-workers walked out of the factory in a show of solidarity, demanding the reinstatement of their union president.

  • Please support the Triumph International workers in Thailand, and call for the immediate reinstatement of their union president. Write today to Triumph International’s headquarters in Switzerland :

Play fair 2008 : respect workers’ rights in the global sporting goods sector!

Play Fair 2008 is organized by:

The Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC), the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), and the International Textile, Garment and Leather Worker’s Federation (ITGLWF). The campaign is also supported by a diverse coalition of organizations worldwide. PlayFair 2008 Supporters

We support the aims and demands of the PlayFair 2008 Campaign.

We believe that sportswear and athletic footwear companies, the International Olympic Committee (IOC), National Olympics Committees, as well as national governments must take steps to eliminate the exploitation and abuse of workers in the global sporting goods industry.

We urge them to take inspiration from the spirit of the Olympics and demonstrate to the world how the principles of fair play can be extended to the workplace...

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