Fired Employee Says NGO Ignored Order

A fired union president who worked for the NGO Population Services International denounced the organization on Monday for not following a Ministry of Social Affairs and Labor order to reinstate him as an employee.

The union president, Kit Chen, filed a complaint with the ministry after he was fired from PSI in May. On July 18, the ministry sent PSI an order to reinstate Kit Chen at his previous position within 15 days of the order or face penalties, a copy of the order said.

“PSI discriminates against the unions,” Kit Chen said. “It fired me because I tried to help the work­ers.” PSI did not inform Kit Chen of the reason for his dismissal, he said.

The ministry order said PSI did not have sufficient reasons to fire Kit Chen from the NGO and was ordered to reinstate him in July.

“The Department of Labor In­spection regrets not allowing your organization to dismiss” Kit Chen, states the July 18 order, signed by the chief of the ministry’s Labor Inspection Depart­ment, Huot Chenthy. “The dismissal has insufficient reasons. Please, director, accept Mr Kit Chen to work as usual in 15 days.”

The order also said that the NGO could face penalties if it did not comply.

“Within 15 days, if you do not comply with the above description, you will be punished. Fur­thermore, you could receive a court penalty judgment.”

PSI Deputy Country Repre­sent­ative Jacqueline Devine de­clined to comment on the reason Kit Chen was fired, saying on Monday that it is a “confidential problem” of the employees and had nothing to do with any union problems or activities.

Devine also declined to discuss whether PSI would reinstate Kit Chen into the organization, saying only that the NGO is filing an appeal with the ministry.

“We have to work step by step,” she said.


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