MTUC strongly rejects the government’s move to give employers three more months to comply with new laws which are to address the long-standing issue of squalid living conditions of migrant workers, many of whom have been struck with Covid-19.
We simply cannot fathom why Human Resources Minister M Saravanan would grant employers the grace period, especially when many Covid-19 cases currently reported involve migrant workers, not just those at immigration detention centres but also the ones living at construction sites.
It is totally irresponsible for the minister to expect Malaysians to continue living with the risk of foreign workers’ dormitories becoming new clusters of Covid-19 simply because he thinks that employers need more time to comply with laws that were passed ten months ago.
The amended Workers' Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities Act 1990 which will come into force on Monday was initially endorsed by the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) and MTUC.
Subsequently, it was approved by both houses of Parliament in July last year.
As such, employers had ample time to comply with it, well before the Covid-19 pandemic struck us.
The amendments to the Act are meant to put an end to foreign workers living in cramped, grimy and squatter-like conditions either at “kongsi” on project sites, three-room terrace houses or apartments and shop lots.
Source : https://m.malaysiakini.com/columns/527567