‘Don’t take advantage of workers’

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) yesterday urged employers not to take advantage of their workers who have lost their overtime income and commissions due to Covid-19.

Its secretary-general J Solomon said that although non-essential business premises were not allowed to operate during the 14-day movement control order until March 31, employers still have the option to make arrangements for their employees to work from home via remote or virtual operation.

“Workers should be treated like partners and employers should complement government efforts to maintain social security and harmony instead of resorting to unreasonable actions that could result in chaos in the country,” he said in a statement here yesterday.

He also stressed that, employers could not rely on the termination and lay-off benefits because the movement control order is not a situation where the employer does not provide work to the worker for at least 12 normal working days within four consecutive weeks.

“Instead, this is a situation where employers are ordered by the government to close their business for health and safety reasons. Therefore, employers cannot rely on the term to terminate workers.

“There should not be any salary deduction or repayment by doing overtime for free, deduction of annual leave or off day in view of the 14 days compulsory closure of business,” he said.  

Solomon said it is crucial for employers to exhibit acts of patriotism amid the movement control order.

Those who do not comply with the Order will face prosecution under the Prevention and Control of Infection Diseases Act 1988 (PCIDA) and the Police Act 1967 (PA), he added. − Bernama