Dy Sophon works as a real estate sales consultant for a real estate development company. When the problem of unequal pay between female and male construction workers was raised, he knew right away where to take his stand.
Seeing the positive growth of construction projects in Cambodia, Sophon can feel the difficulty of having women involved in the big game.
“We can see the involvement of women is still limited, especially for construction where male workers are mainly needed. We only need females for cleaning and other basic light labour,” he said.
Some foreign projects even bring their own workers to do the building, he added, which also in a way affects the situation of the female construction workers.
“Women are our second steps, the first step is to have male workers to work. And the pay, therefore, cannot possibly get higher unless they do other jobs besides labour work,” he said.
In his company estate project, Sophon added, women workers are usually assigned to do different tasks from male workers. Otherwise, they can work at the storage to help workers take care of stock.
But this solution is not permanent. He thinks more private sectors and government must make efforts to balance the rights between male and female labourers, especially to value women’s contribution to the sector. Otherwise more females might migrate to other countries to find work, despite the fact that construction projects in the country are booming.