Unlike the 1st wave of COVID-19 almost all factories continuously operated during the 2nd wave but with a number of less employees because the employers did not want to bring Employees in the mixed boarding houses. As a result, majority of the female employees had to stay at their boarding houses and later some of the employers forced them to change their boarding houses or else they have to sacrifice their employment.
In the same time because of FTZ & GSEU intervention and publicity and the pathetic situation faced by the female employees, the factory owners were compelled to provide basic food items but only the permanent employees received and the so called man power employees suffered due to the discriminatory method used by the employers.
When the 2nd wave was hit, majority of the female workers were stranded at boarding houses without food, and when our union published this the Govt. appointed a Navy Lieutenant General together with his team to handle the overall situation in the Katunayake FTZ zone and therefore Our Union had to give written representation to them and even had a discussion with them to ensure the basic needs of the FTZ employees.
When FTZ & GSEU initiated dry food rations the police did not allow us operate this programme, due to this the Union had to approach Brigadier Shavindra De. Silva, Head of Presidential Task force on C-19 over the telephone and written representation. As a result, we got the permission to distribute dry rations among the workers.
In March 2021, FTZ & GSEU distributed dry food rations in Vavuniya and Mannar districts on specially categorised Garment factory female workers (Women headed household/widows/differently able and those covid infected and recovered).
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