Thursday, April 14, 2022

Exemption Of RM1500.00 Minimum Wage For Selected Sectors


Press Statement By  Malaysian Trades Union Congress Penang Division - 

Exemption Of RM1500.00 Minimum Wage For Selected Sectors.

The Human Resources Minister, M.Saravanan's announcement that selected sectors, such as tourism, the informal sectors and those who have suffered losses due to the impact of Covid-19, would be exempted from the Implementation of the proposed minimum wage of RM1500.00, is misplaced.

In the first instance the underlying objective, of a national minimum wage is premised upon the principle that all wage earners, irrespective of the economic sectors that they are involved in, ought to be paid a decent minimum wage. This is for the simple reason that any wage, below the national minimum wage, would only result in a mis-match of minimum wage levels between one economic sector to another. Common sense will dictate that our government cannot be cherry picking on the fundamental issue of a national minimum wage. In our view a national minimum wage must be enforced holistically and not selectively.

On this said issue the Minister Of Human Resources, and by extention the government, seems to have been swayed by the lobbying by the business community to extricate themselves from paying their workers the national minimum wage. Obviously, we have inherited a government that seems to be beholden to the employers at the expense of the grossly underpaid working class population.

On a population demography, the most vulnerable citizens of our soceity are those who are entrapped in the B40 and M40 segment. By exempting them from the benefits of the minimum wage of RM1500.00, the government ought to stand accused of being inconsiderate to their financial plight. They, faced with the ever escalating cost of living, will continue to suffer financial stress no thanks to the baseless selective implementation of the RM1500.00 minimum wage.

MTUC Penang Division is of the view that the government has a moral obligation to ensure that each and every working class citizen is paid the national minimum wage as all workers have the constitutional right to be treated equally.

We, therefore, demand that the Human Resources Minister, and the government, upholds the constitutional right of all workers to be accorded the national minimum wage without any exemption.


Secretary MTUC Penang Division

016 4184520


Sunday, April 10, 2022

Bosses Indiffrence To Welfare Of Migrant Workers, A Case Of Insufficient Enforcement?

 Press Statement By Malaysian Trades Union Congress Penang Division - Bosses Indiffrence To Welfare Of Migrant Workers, A Case Of Insufficient Enforcement?

Nauseating odour, rats and cockroaches infested living conditions, folded cardboard boxes for a bed, poor ventilation and leaking pipes - not a case of life in a slave camp but a reality in today's Malaysia!

That was the case when our Labour Department (Jabatan Tenaga Kerja) inspected the housing conditions of migrant workers in Bandar Tun Razak, Cheras recently.

Shocking, though, was the discloure that the employer’s representative took the position that the company has fulfilled it's responsibility to provide accomodation but had no time to monitor living conditions leaving it to the workers to resolve issues they face!

We, in MTUC Penang Division, outrightly condemn the nefarious attitude of the employer involved. To the authorities we say invoke the full extent of the law as such employers do not deserve mercy for their inhumane treatment of their migrant workers. We are also of the view that such uncaring employers should be black listed from seeking to recruit migrant workers.

Our country, having ratified the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Protocol 29 related to the ILO's forced labour convention, has a duty to enforce the Minimum Standards Of Housing, Accomodation and Amenities Act, 1990 (Act 446) without fear or favour. Though that ought to be so, we are given to understand that, with about 400 labour inspectors nationwide the Labour Department (JTK) lacks the manpower to undertake extensive inspection of housing conditions let alone adherence to employment related labour standards. Needless to state that, under such circumstances the incidences of absuses and violation of Act 446, would continue to exist on account of insufficient enforcement.

MTUC Penang Division, therefore, is of the view that the Ministry Of Human Resoucers ought to create a Migrant Workers Affairs Department with jurisdiction to oversee issues pertaining to employment of migrant workers. With millions of migrant workers toiling in the economic interest of our country we would argue that a specialised Migrant Workers Affairs Department with the authority to investigate, inspect, enforce and prosecute errant employers is urgently required. 

It is our opinion that, unless our Human Resoucers Ministry takes a proactive approach in matters related to the absuses confronting the migrant workers, violation of basic human rights will continue to prevail. But by enhancing our enforcement mechanism, through a dedicated Migrant Workers Affairs Department within the Ministry Of Human Resources, we believe that instances of migrant workers absuses can be greatly arrested.



MTUC Penang Division

016 4184520