Chonburi’s designation as a coronavirus “red zone” has stranded unemployed workers in Pattaya, unable to work or leave for the provinces.
Staffers at the closed Sabai Sabai Massage said they’re unable to earn any income, as massage parlors were closed along with bars and pubs to prevent the spread of Covid-19, but they also cannot leave Pattaya for Issan.
Only those with “essential” business are granted government permission to leave Chonburi under the current lockdown. Those arriving from “highly controlled areas” in most Northeast provinces are also required to go into quarantine for two weeks.
So masseuses, bargirls, hotel workers and other unemployed Pattaya residents are stuck here, increasingly dependent on food handouts and the generosity of landlords to afford a city relatively more expensive than Issan.
Mayor Sonthaya Kunplome planned to meet Friday with tourism industry associations and the Social Security Office to discuss the plight of the estimated 80,000 Pattaya residents put out of work by lockdown measures in hopes of obtaining government support for them.