The trade union movement in Malaysia was destroyed decades ago in a combination of outright repression and slow strangulation by restrictive laws.
While workers have continued to organise in this period, it has been difficult to develop strong militant unions. In the last couple of years, a new leadership team has revitalised the hospital cleaners union. It still faces lots of challenges.
Jiselle Hanna, a member of the APC team, was in Malaysia last month on a trade union visit. Jiselle talks about the growth of the cleaners union, its achievements, its strategies to counter contracting out and the challenges it still faces.
Asia Pacific Currents provides updates of labour struggles and campaigns from the Asia Pacific region. It is produced by Australia Asia Worker Links, in the studio of 3CR Radio in Melbourne, Australia
Jiselle Hanna and Pier Moro