JELI’s Newsletter July 2021

July has been a challenging month for workers and people all across Thailand, with COVID cases and deaths reaching record highs while the government offers little relief. The JELI team has still been working hard to support workers and promote labor justice in Thailand during these hard times. Below you’ll find updates on JELI’s work from this eventful month.


JELI x SEWA Workshop: Digital Inclusion and Platform Co-ops

JELI partnered with The Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) to organiztสมาe a two-day workshop which took place earlier this month. SEWA is a national union of 1.8 million informal women workers in India, using a cooperative organizing model to help achieve full employment and self-reliance for women in various collective enterprises. During this workshop, SEWA shared their expertise in running cooperatives and navigating digital platforms with garment workers from Try Arm and Solidarity Factory as well as sex workers from the Empower Foundation.

Four-Part Training on Leadership in the Labor Movement

The first of our four-part workshop training series will be taking place this Friday, July 30th. Representatives of various workers’ groups will be attending to receive training on media output, law, and gender issues, all of which concern the growth of the labor movement and their participation in it.

  • Session 1 – Media Training (with WAY Magazine)
  • Session 2 – Labor Law: Know Your Rights
  • Session 3 – Guidelines for Handling a Prosecution (with Thai Lawyers for Human Rights and iLaw)
  • Session 4 – Gender Study (with Feminista)

“Women in the Platform Economy” Study Group

This study group brings together women workers across various fields such as massage and domestic work to share their knowledge and experience, and to empower them as leaders in the fight for labor justice. JELI will be facilitating three online meetings discussing:

  1. The Life and Work of Female Workers in the Platform Economy
  2. Safety and Sexual Harassment Prevention on the Job
  3. Finding a Solution: Forming Workers’ Cooperatives in this New Economy

“Strengthening Labor in the Pro-Democracy Movement” Study Group

[POSTPONED DUE TO COVID-19] As part of JELI’s project to strengthen labor forces within the ongoing pro-democracy movement, a study group comprised of workers and labor organizers from Samut Prakan, Bang Bon, Bangkok and Saraburi was set to begin in July. However, these gatherings have been postponed indefinitely as we wait for the COVID-19 situation in the country to improve, for the safety of local populations and all participants involved.


JELI Joins Government Subcommittee on Labor Welfare and Platform Work

Back in March of this year, JELI organized a workshop seminar together with the Ministry of Labor and Labor Committee of the House of Representatives, civil society experts and academics, and platform worker representatives to discuss issues plaguing workers within the gig economy. In early July, it was announced that JELI will be joining the Subcommittee on Labor Welfare and Platform Work under the Labor Committee of the House of Representatives, alongside other partner organizations, to study labor welfare and push for more just practices within this emerging field of platform work. JELI is ready to listen to the demands of app-based workers within their various fields such as food delivery and domestic work, and push for speedy and concrete reforms to improve their working conditions.

Blogs and Media Stories


Foodpanda Thailand released a public statement on Twitter terminating a rider’s employment and labeling them as a ‘terrorist’ after a video went viral of the rider performing acts of symbolic political expression at the July 18th rally. The rider was subsequently arrested with charges of lèse-majesté, violating article 112 of Thailand’s criminal code. Pro-democracy and workers’ rights advocates erupted in protest of Foodpanda Co., with #BanFoodpanda going viral on social media for days. Read JELI’s statement here (available in Thai and English), and check out our researcher Neab’s interview with the Matter on this issue in the context of labor protection laws and the employment status of delivery riders.

LineMan Protests

Our timeline of events for the LineMan protests which started in June is now available in English here. JELI’s Kriangsak Teerakowitkajorn also offers his analysis of the LineMan workers’ movement in this article published on Decode. We will continue to support the riders until their demands are met in full!


The Active x JELI Podcast

The second and third episodes of our podcast series in collaboration with The Active are out now! (Only available in Thai). On the second episode, JELI researcher “Neab” Chonthita Kraisrikul joins a representative of the Freedom Rider Union “Ray”, and a rider from Chonburi province “Pum”, to discuss issues that riders face as “independent contractors” working under platform companies. On the third episode, JELI project manager Suthila Luenkam and labor scholar Kritsada Theerakosonphong shed light on the lack of welfare afforded to app-based domestic workers and delivery riders, and offer policy-based solutions to these labor injustices.

New to the JELI Team

Suluck Lamubol (Fai)

Fai will be joining JELI’s team as an advisor and researcher. Fai has worked for the Labor and Migration Program of the Asia Pacific Forum on Women, Law and Development, a network of feminist organizations and grassroots activists in the Asia-Pacific region working toward women’s rights, and has also worked as a journalist for local Thai media covering human rights, Thai current affairs and women’s issues. We’re proud and excited to have her joining our team!