‘I have received updates directly from workers from 9 states of the issues they are facing and it is shocking and sad!
And it is in this climate and environment; we have itchy mouths shooting off, putting vulnerable demography of workers and their families in harm’s way!’
TIME FOR RESPONSIBLE COMPANIES TO DUMP THEIR ITCHY MOUTH REPRESENTATIVES WHO HAVE NO LOVE FOR WORKERS SAYS MALAYSIA ASEAN APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST PROF DR JACOB GEORGE!
Every meeting that I have been invited by the government, Medical NGOs, stakeholders; I do cross swords with these unreasonable individuals obsessed with prioritizing profits for their members the Employers!
Where’s that giving back to the community?
Every measure where we talk about re-looking at improving the lot of the workers is met with sarcastic claims that the employers will be made bankrupt!
It can be on the basic issue of the minimal wage which for decades had created a ‘slave condition’ for Malaysian workers and even the now foreign workers leaving their countries to work in a foreign land amidst its many challenges, harassment, sordid living conditions and risks.
If I am not mistaken when we discussed re configuring the minimum wage on an upward trajectory one employer representative stated that if the minimum wage was upgraded 600,000 businesses will go bust simply because of the imposition of the minimum wage by the government?
But that never happened!
So much for that prophet of doom scenario and utterances!
Even when we had discussions to re-look at repacking the medical benefits with the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) and its over-all healthcare costs which embarrassingly have never being revised despite costs over-runs for decades because someone had their priorities all wrong!
They were living in illusion towers and being self-servers!
Personal and political interest overrode what was the right thing to do!
While another ‘short lived government’ – embarrassed themselves in trying to cluster this with the cost of living issue and went nowhere, despite two high-powered committees?
I should know as I was appointed by the Najib Administration as lead on the cost of living committee just before the GE14!
So I am again not shocked hearing the same argument, another frolic this time claiming without any evidence that employers will go bust if the position taken by dear friend and Defense Minister Ismail Sabri that all private sector employers must pay their workers’ salary during the weeks of the movement control order (MCO) as the nation is hit by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Defense Minister was right on cue!
Being a lawyer as well, he was addressing a social and moral responsibility of the employers!
Worst when pro-employer lobby uses the Employment Act for a political argument abandoning basic human sensitiveness towards those in a challenged position not of their doing!
Malaysian employers have had it extremely good in this country!
And it is about time that those employers these individuals are representing look beyond their self-interest and to follow the example of other responsible companies which had been working very well with their employees to do what is morally right!
You want names – I can give you names!
More so in the midst of a global pandemic which is hurting!
Are we aware that more than one-quarter of the world’s 7.8 billion people are now largely confined to their homes, as governments step up curbs on movement and social contact in a bid to contain the virus.
It is disturbing the body, mind and spirit that in many parts of the world, borders are closed, airports, hotels and businesses shut, and school cancelled.
And the result of these unprecedented measures the tearing at the social fabric of some societies and disrupting many economies, resulting in mass job losses and raising the spectra of widespread hunger.
Already Malaysian and our foreign workers are positioned in a tough spot!
I have received updates directly from workers from 9 states of the issues they are facing and it is shocking and sad!
And it is in this climate and environment; we have itchy mouths shooting off, putting vulnerable demography of workers and their families in harm’s way!
But at the same time, I want to thank the many MNC, TNC and local Employers who have personally called me up for discussions how to reach out and help holistically and to look at a plan of delivery so that the rights, interests and needs of all groups are mitigated!
To them I say – Terima Kasih!