Petition for workers on strike at Chong Won Fashion, Inc. and Phils. Jeon Garments, Inc. in Cavite, Philippines sign now


10 October 2006

ATTY. LILIA B. DE LIMA
Director-General
Philippine Economic Zone Authority
(PEZA), San Luis St. Cor. Roxas Blvd.
Pasay City
Tel: (+63 2) 551-34-54/551-34-55
Fax: (+63 2) 891-63-80, 891-64-44,
891-63-82
Email: [email protected]
Dear Director De Lima:

We have written to lodge a strong protest and condemnation for the blatant violations committed by your office on the rights of the striking workers at Chong Won Fashion, Inc. (CWFI) and Phils Jeon Garments Inc. (PJI) both located in the Cavite Export Processing Zone (CEPZ), Rosario, Cavite under your administration and command responsibility.

According to the striking workers, as reported to the Workers Assistance Center, Inc. (WAC), your office had ordered the violent attack on the peaceful strike on September 25 and 27 where more than 40 strikers mostly women sustained head injuries, bruises, and contusions from clubbing. It was reported also that women strikers were assaulted on their private parts by Peza policemen and Jantro security forces to further humiliate them.

Your Office ordered an inhumane food blockade since September 25 to starve the strikers at the CWFI to force them to abandon their strike. The food blockade had caused the arrest and detention of eight workers when they were caught by your police force keeping one sack of rice and other personal belongings for the strikers. The eight workers were now falsely charged with trespassing.

As reported by WAC, the eight workers were from SP Ventures Corporation who had been allowed by PEZA to guard the equipment and machineries in a warehouse inside the Cavite Export Processing Zone (CEPZ) after their Korean-employer shutdown their company in May 2006 and filed insolvency case in the court. While waiting for the resolution of the insolvency proceedings, the presence of the eight workers inside the Cavite Export Processing Zone has been in full knowledge and approval of PEZA since May.

Your Office ordered the confiscation of company identification cards and CEPZs zone pass of all the strikers of CWFI and posted the names of the strikers to ban them from entering the CEPZ, virtually reducing their strength in numbers and make the remaining strikers defenseless in their picket line.

While striking workers were not allowed to enter the CEPZ, your police force is under strict instruction from your office to escort and allow scabs to enter the struck companies. This is a total discrimination in the blatant sense. And we learned that hiring scabs during strike is illegal in your law.

In a violent attack of the striking workers at PJGI on the night of September 27, the workers reported that PEZA police force headed by a certain Surasua were all drunk. They also suspected that several of their attackers were under the influence of prohibited drugs because of their abnormal behavior.

The ill treatment being received by the striking workers from your office is quite alarming. The use of brute force, threat and intimidation, in resolving the labor-management conflict in favor of the struck companies is highly condemnable to a country claiming to have subscribed to democratic ideals and principles.

We valued much the contribution of the workers in the development of the society. We believed that their rights shall at all times be protected and upheld by the government.

As a human rights/workers rights organization/institution, we are with the striking workers in urging your office in their demands to stop:

1. The use of brute force and shameful connivance of PEZA with the Korean owners of CWFI and PJGI in denying the full exercise of the workers rights to strike and to bargain collectively;
2. The inhumane food blockade and PEZA should allow free entry of food supplies to the strikers picket line;
3. The denial of entry of the strikers through checkpoints, confiscation of company identification cards (IDs) and CEPZs zone pass, and blacklisting in order to reduce the strength in numbers of the strikers;
4. The supplying and escorting of scabs inside the factories to replace the strikers and run the operations of the struck companies; and
5. The illegal subcontracting of the Wal-mart order in CWFI to Jeshurun Fashion Intl. Corp. also in CEPZ;

Also, we urge the following:

6. Drop all fabricated charges and unconditionally release the eight workers, namely: Gemma Lape, Ivy Villasan, Lorna Reli, Josephine Bajar, Pablito Zapanta, Annalou Estremos, Rodel Amo, and Glaiza Leysi.
7. Bring the Korean owners of the CWFI and PJI face-to-face with the workers in the negotiating table;
8. Return the illegally-confiscated or stolen personal materials such as one sack of rice, cell phones, and camera to the workers;
9. Make appropriate actions against PEZA personnel Atty. Jane Arada for her conduct unbecoming of an officer or for her bad manners and wrong conduct towards the strikers;
10. And, subject the PEZA Police force and Jantro guards to drug testing.

We are hoping that your office will safeguard the rights of the workers and will take the necessary and prompt action regarding the matters we have raised here. Please update us regarding the actions you have so far taken regarding this case. Thank you very much!
Sincerely yours,

xxx

Please send copies to:

H. E. GLORIA MACAPAGAL-ARROYO
President
Republic of the Philippines
Malacanang Palace, JP Laurel St.,
San Miguel, Manila, NCR 1005
Tel: (+63 2) 735-8005
Fax: (+63 2) 736-1010
Email: [email protected]

ARTURO BRION
Secretary
Department of Labor and Employment
Executive Bldg., San Jose St.,
Intramuros, Manila
Fax: 527-2121, 527-2131, 527-5523, 527-34-94
Email: [email protected]

RAJAN KAMALANATHAN
Director of Compliance, Global Procurement
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
702 Southwest 8th St.
Bentonville, AR 72716-0830
Fax: (479) 277-1799
[email protected]

MARIE DAVID
WALMART
[email protected]

GUY D. BRADFORD
American Eagle Outfitters
[email protected]

DEANNA ROBINSON
Senior Director, Global Compliance
Email:[email protected]

MR. YANG SON CHOI
President
Phils. Jeon Garments, Inc.
Cavite Export Processing Zone (CEPZ),
Rosario, Cavite, Philippines
Fax: (+63 46) 437-28-13

MR. YONG RYUL KIM
President
Chong Won Fashion, Inc. (CWFI)
Cavite Export Processing Zone (CEPZ)
Rosario, Cavite, PHILIPPINES
Tel. No.: (+63 46) 437 0316 to 19/ Direct line (+63 46) 437-07-58
Email: [email protected]
Fax: (+63 46) 437-03-14

HON. PURIFICACION C. QUISUMBING
Commissioner,
Commission on Human Rights (CHR)
SAAC Bldg., Commonwealth Ave.,
UP Complex, Diliman QC, Philippines
Tel: (+63 2) 928-56-55/926-61-88/929-0102
Fax: (+63 2) 929-01-02
Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

HON. JINGGOY EJERCITO ESTRADA
5th flr., Rm. 526 GSIS Bldg., Financial Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City
Trunk Lines: (632) 552-6601 to 80 loc. 5539 - 41 / 5583 / 2470
Direct Lines: (632) 552-6685 - 86
Email: [email protected]

HON. AQUILINO Q. PIMENTEL, JR.
Rm. 601 GSIS Bldg., Financial Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City
Trunk Lines: (632) 552-6601 to 80 loc. 6502 - 05
Direct Line: (632) 552-6745 or 33 / (632) 551-6861
Fax No.: (632) 552-6713
Email: [email protected]

HON. JAMBY MADRIGAL
5th flr., Rm. 510 GSIS Bldg., Financial Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City
Trunk Lines: (632) 552-6601 to 80 loc. 5565 - 66 / 5591
Direct Lines: (632) 552-6687 / (632) 552-6703
Email: [email protected]

HON. RAMON BONG REVILLA, JR.
5th flr., Rm. 526 GSIS Bldg., Financial Center, Roxas Blvd., Pasay City
Trunk Lines: (632) 552-6601 to 80 loc. 5577 / 5521 - 23
Fax No.: (632) 552-6698
Email: [email protected]

HON. RAFAEL MARIANO
Rm. S-615, House of Representatives, Quezon City
Phone: 931-5001 local 7314, 9316397

HON. LIZA MAZA
S-309, House of Representatives, Quezon City
Phone: 931-5001 local 7230, 9316268

HON. CRISPIN B. BELTRAN
Rm. S-602, House of Representatives, Quezon City
Phone: 931-5001 local 7300, 9316615

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Rodney EspinozaBy:
LGTBIn:
Petition target:
Director-General lawyer Lilia B. De Lima of the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA)

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