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Taiwan: Mothers Against Blood and Sweat on May 1 – Protection for Domestic Work !

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by Fish Ip published May 03, 2021 12:59 PM
DCU together with MENT demand for Domestic Service Act!

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(Translation from the Chinese statement  below. )

💪I want Domestic Service Act
💪PRT butuh lindungan hukum
💪Gusto ko ng Batas para sa Kasambahay
💪Phục vụ việc nhà phải được đảm bảo

Organizer: Taiwan Migrant Workers Alliance (MENT) Press Contact: Liu Xiaoying 

There are two important days for migrant domestic workers in May, #LaborDay and #Mother's Day. Labor Day is a day to commemorate women workers who fought for labor conditions a century ago, while Mother's Day is a day to honor mothers who have made silent contributions. There are nearly 250,000 women domestic workers in Taiwan who are separated from their own children for long time. They are still in sweatshop situation with long working hours and low wages, making it impossible for them to celebrate Mother's Day. The Taiwan Migrant Workers Alliance (MENT), migrant workers, and solidarity groups join together in front of the Executive Yuan to demand that domestic work be protected by labor laws, and that the #Family Services Act be the best Mother's Day gift for all the laborers and migrant mothers in Taiwan who work silently!

Long-term care work is not cheap, and caregivers should be protected by the labor law].

Since 1992, when migrant workers have been allowed to work in Taiwan, there are 713,933 migrant workers in Taiwan as of the end of March 2021, of which 34% were domestic caregivers without labor law protection. This year, due to the impact of the epidemic, employers are no longer able to easily bring in migrant workers from abroad. Some employers have long been relying on the cheap 24-hour migrant caregivers. In order to tie the workers up, employers have even requested the Ministry of Labor through legislative members to "prohibit caregivers from switching to factory workers.

According to a report released by the Ministry of Labor in January 2020, the average working hours of migrant domestic workers reached 10.4 hours per day, and only 11.4% of migrant domestic workers have weekly day0offs. 34.4% of migrant domestic workers do not have a single holiday. The Control Yuan published an investigation report as early as 2014, pointing out that migrant domestic workers, without the protection of labor laws, may have to be on call 24 hours a day, without a holiday for three years. As they are working behind closed doors, they are more likely to be assigned to work outside that are not permitted. They are more vulnerable to sexual assault and harassment. The Control Yuan requested the Ministry of Labor and the Ministry of Health and Welfare to review and improve the current laws and policies. It can be seen that, compared to migrant workers in factories, who are protected by the Labor Standards Law, domestic caregivers are paid less than the basic wage, their working hours are not regulated, and they are not protected by any labor laws. Therefore, it is very normal that they would want to switch to factory work under such poor labor conditions.

In our opinion, the government should think about improving the labor conditions of caregivers instead of thinking of ways to "prevent them from switching to factories", which is just to hide its head in the sand. At the same time, the public should further think about the fact that long-term care is definitely a job with long working hours, high pressure, and extreme difficulty. Otherwise, why is local caregiving manpower so scarce? Taiwan has been in an aging society for many years, so squeezing cheap manpower from other countries to make up for the lack of local long-term care manpower is not the answer after all. #The only way to retain people is to establish a sound long-term care system, give caregivers labor law protection, and have a good working environment so that the people being cared for can be truly well cared for.

Where is the promised Domestic Service Act?

In October 2004, MENT first proposed the "Domestic Service Act" to the government, but for 16 years it was stillborn in the Legislative Yuan. In 2008, Wang Ruxuan, the head of the Labor Affairs Commission under the Ma Ying-jeou administration, said that domestic workers should be included in the "Labor Standards Act". But he later made a U-turn and proposed the "Domestic Workers Protection Act", which would leave day-offs and working hours to be determined by the negotiation between the employers and the workers. This is the same as legalizing the slavery system. The law was later returned by the Executive Yuan. In fact, whether it is "incorporated into the Labor Standards Act" or the establishment a separate "Domestic Services Act," "caregivers must be protected by labor laws" has been the goal of this Alliance for many years since its establishment.

Before the 2016 presidential election, presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen promised, "The domestic service Act has not been passed, so we are trying to do some internal integration, and after our internal integration is done, then we will see if there are other things that need to be dealt with outside. The company's main business is to promote the development of the company's products and services. The Lin Wan-i, the minister without portfolio of the Executive Yuan, also said at the time, "We advocate that legislation should be enacted to protect, not the way it is now, only to get a little improvement after a little noise, which is unfair to migrant caregivers. (Video link to Tsai's speech: https://reurl.cc/E2m3xm)

However, five years have passed, the government has repeatedly postponed the legislation on the grounds that "there is still no consensus" and "we need to match the long-term care system", and no progress has been made at all!

In 2008, the government promoted a 10-year plan for long-term care, and after the DPP (Democratic Progressive Party) government has taken office, the "Long Term Care 2.0" plan was launched one after another. In the face of the new epidemic, the Ministry of Health and Welfare has finally opened up "respite services" to families employing migrant domestic workers starting in December 2020 (home services are still not open). With the slow increase in government resources for long-term care and the growing understanding of domestic migrant workers, we believe it is time for employers and migrant workers to get out of the "exploitation among the weak - the needy ones for care and the care workers" situation!

In the short term, legislation of the #DomesticServicesAct is urgent because it is the most basic labor protection for the 230,000 migrant domestic workers, which has been overdue for more than 20 years. In the long run, the current "employment system by individual families" must be abolished so that the government can bear the care responsibilities and provide better long-term care services. Families who are in need of long-term care are no longer forced to hire domestic migrant workers due to a lack of government care resources. It is the basic right of the disabled to be cared for, and the government is duty-bound to do so!

During the International Migrants Day last December, migrant workers declared that they would re-demand the Domestic Services Act to the Legislative Yuan. On March 8 of this year, International Women's Day, migrant workers, civil society organizations, and women from all walks of life gathered in front of the Legislative Yuan to demand that the Domestic Services Act be enacted as soon as possible. We hereby strongly request the Executive Yuan to expeditiously introduce a version to the Legislative Yuan in order to facilitate the passage of the Domestic Services Act. For migrant domestic workers, the Domestic Services Act is the best Mother's Day and Labor Day gift for all migrant mothers who are workers!
#legislation to protect domestic workers

Taiwan Migrant Workers Alliance (MENT) 

See also: 
Statement by Domestic Caretakers Union (DCU), Taiwan:  https://www.facebook.com/human.dignity.10/videos/851274058791452

*****

(original Chinese Press release)

【新聞稿】

母親五一反血汗 家務勞動要保障

💪我要家服法
💪PRT butuh lindungan hukum
💪Gusto ko ng Batas para sa Kasambahay
💪Phục vụ việc nhà phải được đảm bảo
主辦單位:台灣移工聯盟(MENT) 新聞聯絡人:劉曉櫻

5月有兩個對家務移工重要的節日,#勞動節 與 #母親節。勞動節是百年前女性勞動者爭取勞動條件的紀念日,母親節則是紀念默默無聞奉獻的母親們。全台灣有近25萬女性為主的家事勞動者,長期與自己的子女分離,且仍在高工時與低薪資的血汗處境下,根本無法慶祝母親節。台灣移工聯盟、移工、聲援團體,來到行政院前,要求家務勞動要有勞動法令保障,#家事服務法是所有在台灣默默奉獻的勞動者及移工母親最好的母親節禮物!

【長期照護工作並不廉價,看護工應有勞動法令保障】

自從1992年開放外籍移工來台工作,截至2021年03月底在台移工共713,933人,其中34%為無勞動法令保障之家庭看護工。今年由於疫情影響,使國內雇主無法再輕易從國外引進移工,部分國內雇主長期依賴廉價的24小時照護人力,為了綁住移工,甚至透過立法委員要求勞動部「禁止看護工轉換廠工」。

細究其原因,根據勞動部在2020年1月發布的統計報告,家務移工的平均工時達10.4小時,只有11.4%的家務移工每周有休假,都沒有休假的家務移工高達34.4%。監察院早在2014年就發布調查報告指出,家務移工在沒有勞動法令保障的情況下,可能必須24小時待命、3年都沒有休假,而且因為在封閉的場域中,更可能被指派做許可以外的工作,甚至容易遭受性侵害、性騷擾,監察院要求勞動部與衛福部必須檢討改進。由此可知,相對於在工廠上班的移工受《勞基法》保障;反觀家庭看護工,薪資低於基本工資,工時沒規範,沒有任何勞動法令保障,面對這樣糟糕的勞動條件,會想轉到工廠也是理所當然。

我們認為,政府應思考提升看護工勞動條件,而不是想辦法「不能轉換工廠」,這是完全是頭痛醫腳的鴕鳥心態。同時,社會大眾應進一步思考的是,長期照護絕對是長工時、高壓力、極為困難的工作,否則為何本地照護人力如此稀少?台灣早已邁入高齡化社會多年,壓榨他國人廉價人力,以補足本地長照人力之不足,終究不是問題的解方。#長期照護工作不應該是廉價的,只有建立完善的長照體系,給予看護工勞動法令保障,有好的勞動環境,才能把人留住,被照顧者才能得到真正妥善的照護。

【選前承諾選後忘記,說好的《家事服務法》呢?】

2004年10月本聯盟首次向政府提出「家事服務法」草案,然而16年來始終在立法院胎死腹中;2008年馬政府時期的勞委會主委王如玄曾說要將家務工納入《勞基法》,但後來卻大轉彎提出《家事勞工保障法》草案,將休假、工時交由勞雇協商訂定,形同合法化奴工制度,後來該法亦遭到行政院退回。事實上,不論是「納入勞基法」或是「家事服務法」,「看護工必須要有勞動法令保障」,一直是本聯盟成立多年來不變的目標。

2016年總統大選前,總統候選人蔡英文承諾:「家事服務法一直沒有通過這件事情,我們試圖來做一下內部的整合,先把我們內部整合好了以後,再來看外面的,還有沒有其他比較需要處理的事情。總而言之這件事情我是很有感覺的,我們一定會有所處理。」現任政務委員林萬億當時也說:「我們主張,應該要立法來保障,不能用現在這樣,都是吵一下才會得到一點點的改善,這對外籍看護工是不公平的。」(蔡英文發言之影片連結:https://reurl.cc/E2m3xm
但,五年過去了,政府屢次以「仍沒有共識」、「要搭配長照制度」為由推遲立法,完全沒有任何進展!

【反血汗 要長照,看護工 要保障】

2008年政府推動長照十年計畫,民進黨政府上台後「長照2.0」計畫接連推出。而在新冠疫情的緊逼之下,衛福部終於自2020年12月起,開放聘僱家務移工的家庭得以申請「喘息服務」(居家服務仍未開放)。在政府長照資源的緩步增長、社會對家務移工的理解漸增之下,我們認為,是時候讓雇主與移工擺脫「弱弱相殘」的處境!

短期而言,《#家事服務法》的立法刻不容緩,因為這是遲來了二十多年、對於23萬名家務移工最基本的勞動保障。長期而言,現行的「個別家庭聘僱制度」必須落日,由政府提供更完善的長照服務,擴大政府長照的量能,讓長照家庭不再因為長照資源匱乏,而被迫聘僱家務移工,讓個別家庭承擔長照的責任。失能者受照顧是最基本的權利,政府責無旁貸!

在去年12月國際移工日的行動中,移工們已經宣示將重新《家事服務法》送進立法院;今年3月8日國際婦女節,移工、民間團體,以及各界女性聚集在立法院前,訴求《家事服務法》盡速立法。我們在此強力訴求,行政院盡速推出政院版本,以利《家事服務法》的推動!對家務移工來說,《家事服務法》才是所有身為勞動者的移工母親最好的母親節及勞動節禮物!
#立法保障家務工

Source: https://www.tiwa.org.tw/

Story Type: Update

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