Taiwan: Ministry of Labor = Ministry of slave-trafficking!
★★★ 勞動部＝奴工販運部!! ★★★
★★★Ministry of Labor = Ministry of slave-trafficking! ★★★
Press Release on 12 March 2015 by Taiwan International Workers Association (MENT)
Since November 2014, the Ministry of Labor in Taiwan has been frequently releasing news saying that Indonesian government may stop its workers to come to Taiwan. Such news has caused public worries over shortage of care-workers. It is also misleading the general public of Taiwan – Taiwanese may think that Indonesia government is no more sending Indonesian workers overseas as its economy has improved. This has been shifting the public attention to Indonesian government and has caused anger against another country.
★The reason why Indonesian migrants may no more coming to Taiwan to work: Rejection by Ministry of Labor to improve the working condition of migrant domestic workers
What the Ministry of Labor does not reveal to the public was: Indonesian government decides not to allow Indonesian care workers to Taiwan because the government of Taiwan disagrees to several conditions raised by Indonesian government. These include “minimum wage protection for care workers”, “agency fee to be shouldered by employers”.
The wage level of migrant domestic workers has been the same for 18 years. It has been NT15,840 (Taiwan New Dollar) per month. After wage deduction for agency fee inside and outside Taiwan, health insurance etc, a migrant domestic worker gets less than NT7,000 per month in the first working year. They work long hours too. According to a survey done by Ministry of Labor, migrant domestic workers work on average for 14-18 hours per day. Nearly 100,000 migrant domestic workers do not enjoy a single day of rest all year long!
Taiwan has currently the biggest number of migrant domestic workers from Indonesia. Therefore, Indonesia government demands Taiwan to improve working conditions of migrant domestic workers. The Ministry of Labor does not recognize its failure in protection of migrant domestic workers’ rights which has led to slavery situation of workers. What is more, it puts the responsibility of labor shortage to other governments so that it can shamefully maintain its “domestic worker slavery policy”!
★Slave trafficking by Ministry of Labor – A cross-border organized crime in cooperation with the government of Vietnam
The issue of labor shortage in carework for households will be a focus in the coming 2016 presidential election. The Ministry of Health and Welfare maintains a “double-track system” in long-term care service act which maintains migrant domestic workers (in slavery like conditions) continue to be the main option for Taiwanese. The Ministry of Labor rejects government of Indonesia to improve working conditions of domestic workers. It at the same time seeks for other migrant domestic workers who will be forced to work like slaves from other countries, including Vietnam, Burma, Sri Lanka etc.
The Ministry of Labor does not protect labor rights. It is not reviewing its labor slavery policy which has brought Taiwan bad reputation. It seeks for slavery like migrant workers from other countries. This is just like slave trafficking. Taiwan becomes the country with slaves. It carries a bad name of abusing the human rights of migrant workers.
The government of Indonesia negotiates with Taiwan government for betterment of Indonesian migrant domestic workers with the condition of stopping Indonesians to come to Taiwan to work. However, Taiwan government is considering to life the ban on Vietnamese domestic workers in response. (Meanwhile, it seeks for migrant domestic workers from more countries to “increase the source of migrant workers”). This kind of action is similar to capitalists: to look for source of other workers to crack down workers’ struggle!! Vietnam, as a country of origin of migrant workers in slavery like conditions, is like Taiwan. It also rejects to solve the problems of excessive agency fee sucked from workers which is as high as 6,000-7,000 USD (around NT190,000-220,000 which is 25-30 times of workers’ first month salary).On the issue of runaway migrant workers, Government of Vietnam (similar to Taiwan) also imposes heavy punishment on Vietnamese runaway workers: the deported workers will be heavily fined with NT120,000-150,000 by government of Vietnam.
The Ministry of Labor turns blind eyes to cause of “runaway workers’in ‘modern society’, to the policy which allows workers who work like‘slaves in feudal society’, to reason why workers go for rallies and demonstrations. It keeps on maintaining slavery like policy. It keeps Taiwan to rely on migrant workers on care service. It rejects to shoulder the government responsibility in long-term care service.
We condemn the Ministry of Labor for shamefully commit in cross-border slave trafficking!
We demand for improvement of working conditions of domestic workers NOW!
Taiwan International Workers Association
(English translation by Fish IP, IDWF)
Story Type: News