Prachatai has a fascinating story by Tippimol Kiatwateerattana (translated by Kwanravee Wangudom) about the lives of Thailand’s bra sewers. Here is an extract:

… when we walk past the lingerie sections in department stores, we can not help smiling when we see our own work hanging there attached to such incredibly high price tags. “We are like… Wow!! each of them costs as much as 2,000 baht. We feel proud inside that those are our work”, Thanyanun grinned. Surin said, “We are happy just to look at them, hoping people who buy them would be happy like we are too”.

Today, out of the blue, the happiness of these four women and their other 1,954 colleagues has come to the end. They were laid off two months ago, the reason given being that the company has had to change their business structure worldwide. At 1 am. on Friday 26th June, unlucky employees received bad news through mobile phone messages telling them to come to hear what the company had to say at BTEC, Bangna on Monday 29th June. “When we arrived, those who came to hand us envelopes were soldiers in black uniforms, equipped with arms. Before entering the venue, they checked our bags. Even bottles of water were not allowed. Think about it, who would bring weapons? We did not even know why they told us to go there”.