Hospital cleaning workers were arrested in June for staging peaceful protest against their union busting employer – a contractor for Ipoh hospital. In spite of the whole world thanking frontline workers for putting their lives at risk to fight COVID 19, the Malaysian government, the operator of Ipoh hospital, has continued with its anti-worker, and anti-union policies, privatising key public services, and allowing contractor companies to smash the unions.
In Malaysia, like most parts of the world, hospital cleaning workers are amongst the most precarious and the most poorly paid. The newly unionised cleaning workers of Ipoh district hospital are being paid below the nationally declared poverty line.
Today’s Accent of Women discusses what happened when 5 members of the union were arrested for peacefully protesting, and what is next in their struggle – Saras, the union’s secretary was among the 5 arrestees and is this week’s special guest.