Thursday, October 29, 2015

PRM:- Pekerja Swasta Dan Awam Harus Menerima Gaji Minima Sama

Kenyataan Media PRM – 29/10/2015

Pekerja Swasta Dan Awam Harus Menerima Gaji Minima Sama

Parti Rakyat Malaysia(PRM) membantah tindakan kerajaan Malaysia yang tidak prihatin kepada pekerja sektor swasta di mana gaji minima hanya akan dinaikkan kepada RM1,000(untuk Semenanjung Malaysia) dan RM920(untuk Sabah dan Sarawak), sementara pekerja sektor kerajaan (atau penjawat awam) gaji minima telah dinaikkan kepada RM1,200. Harus tidak dilupakan bahawa semua pekerja, sama ada swasta atau kerajaan, menyumbangkan tenaga kepada perjalanan dan pembangunan negara.

PRM berpendapat bahawa semua pekerja, tidak kira sama ada mereka bekerja di sektor swasta atau kerajaan, harus mendapat layanan sama dan gaji minima sama.

Ingin juga dinyatakan bahawa pekerja kerajaan kini menikmati bukan sahaja kestabilan kerja yang lebih, tetapi juga menerima bantuan beraneka jenis termasuk COLA(Cost of Living Allowance), tetapi  semua ini tidak dinikmati pekerja swasta. 

Justeru, secara lojik boleh dikatakan bahawa jika pun ada kadar gaji minima berbeda, secara adil gaji minima pekerja swasta sepatutnya lebih tinggi daripada pekerja kerajaan. Kerajaan harus memerlukan majikan swasta  menyediakan skim saperti COLA untuk  membantu pekerja swasta.

Secara tambahan, adalah tidak munasabah mengapa pekerja di Sabah dan Sarawak ditetapkan gaji minima yang kurang berbanding dengan gaji minima pekerja di Semenanjung Malaysia. Ingin dinyatakan, bahawa kos sara hidup di Sabah dan Sarawak adalah lebih tinggi berbanding dengan Semenanjung Malaysia. Ini bererti pekerja Sabah dan Sarawak seharusnya menikmati gaji minima sama, kalau tidak  lebih tinggi. Nyatanya kerajaan BN lebih mengutamakan perniagaan dan majikan daripada  pekerja.

Gaji Minima RM900 untuk Semenanjung Malaysia dan RM800 untuk Sabah dan Sarawak, telah mula dinikmati pekerja mulai tahun 2013, berasaskan Perintah Gaji Minima 2012 yang dikeluarkan pada 16 Julai 2012. Mengikut Akta berkenaan, gaji minima sepatutnya dikaji semula sekurang-kurangnya dua tahun sekali, bererti sepatutnya gaji minima paling lewat sepatutnya bertambah mulai 1 Januari 2015 tetapi kerajaan BN yang tidak prihatin gagal menambahkan kadar gaji minima awal tahun 2015 walaupun kos sara hidup jelas telah bertambah, antara lain kerana tindakan kerajaan BN mengurangkan subsidi, pelaksanaan GST dan kenaikan harga barangan.

PRM juga menuntut agar kerajaan, khususnya Kementerian Kebajikan, menyediakan bantuan kewangan untuk mereka yang kehilangan kerja dan sedang mencari pekerjaan.  Bantuan kewangan ini harus terus disalurkan kepada pekerja yang kehilangan pekerjaan sehingga mereka dapat kerja baru atau untuk jangka masa sekurang-kurangnya 6 bulan, Bukti usaha mencari kerja wajib untuk melayakkan pekerja mendapatkan bantuan kehidupan ini.  Jumlah bantuan ini harus sekurang-kurangnya RM1,000 sebulan.

Kerajaan yang bertanggungjawab harus memastikan bahawa semua pekerja Malaysia ada mempunyai pekerjaan tetap dan stabil, dan sehingga seseorang pekerja kehilangan kerja berjaya mendapat pekerjaan baru, ianya adalah tanggungjawab kerajaan memastikan bantuan kehidupan diberikan kepada pekerja sekeluarga.

Majikan perniagaan sangat kecil saperti kedai-kedai runcit, restoran dan warong makan, gerai pasar dan pasar tani, kontraktor binaan kecil dan kedai mekanik kereta dan motorsikal  khususnya di bandar dan kampung harus diberikan kelonggaran jika mereka memilih opsyen membayar 50-75% daripada gaji minima, dengan syarat ada skim perkongsian pendapatan/keuntungan perniagaan dengan pekerja, di mana peratusan keuntungan yang harus dikongsi dengan pekerja adalah tidak kurang daripada 40% keuntungan bulanan. Ini adalah kerana kini banyak peniaga kecil tidak mempunyai pendapatan tetap, dan tidak mampu memberi komitmen akan membayar gaji minima pun – tetapi sanggup berkongsi keuntungan dengan pekerja. Niat utama skim sebegini adalah untuk memastikan seberapa boleh pekerja dapat menerima gaji adil, dan majikan perniagaan kecil tidak disusah-bebankan.

PRM berpendirian gaji minima yang wajar harus tidak kurang daripada RM1,500, dan harus dikaji semula dan ditingkatkan setiap tahun. Tindakan menaikkan gaji minima sebanyak RM100 selepas tiga setengah tahun adalah tidak rasional dan 

Koh Swe Yong
Setiausaha Agung,
Parti Rakyat Malaysia
(No. Tel: 012-2766551)

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Toll Hike a disastrous move, say Association of Maybank Executives

Media Statement - 13/10/2015
Toll Hike a disastrous move 
We refer to the announcement of toll hikes which we of the opinion has brought the people particularly the workers cost escalate further to the lowest level. 

There are no excitement and meaning in introducing minimum wage when at the same time,GST has been introduced last year. The hardship doesn't ends there but the removal of subsidies further increase the cost of products namely oil and sugar.

We have to accept the reality of our economic situations especially our main economy pillars,the Banks, which have introduced various scheme like VSS, ERS and MSS which the intention to rightsize and reduce workers. 

Further,an uncertainty agreement called TPPA has been concluded pending consent from parliament. While we are not certain of the contents, we are very sure people have to pay a price for trade and investments brought by other countries especially US. 

Before we even digest the TPPA, our Government officials are already in Busan Korea to commence negotation on Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)  which a regional free trade deal that involves Asean, Australia, China, India, Japan, Korea and New Zealand. 

While this article reflects a negativity in the change of events, people particularly workers must be communicated and create awareness of current scenario. 

We urge the Government to review the following;

1. Percentage of GST which ideally to be reduced to 3% to boost consumption

2. Implementation of COLA to all private workers instead of BRIM which greatly a boost to workers. Govt should provide reduction in corporate tax for companies to able them to pay.

3. Trade union and other stake holders representative to be included in the Economic advisory Committee and any FTA committee to discuss on actions needed to mitigate the increase cost of living and opinions to FTA review as it involves workers.

This temporary steps will be able for the workers to be able to withstand the cost of living and increased toll hike.

Thank you

A.Prem Kumar
General Secretary
Association of Maybank Executives

Sunday, October 4, 2015

TPPA - A viewpoint of a Malaysian Union

Dear Editor,

I have read articles on TPPA and would like to offer my opinion.

We as workers union can't express happiness or sadness of the upcoming conclusion of TPPA. In another word,confused state of mind. The reason is because we dont even know the content of the agreement which contains 29 chapters including labour chapter. 

However, from workers view, one agenda which concerns us very much is the Investor State Dispute settlement which supercedes local laws. That means any dispute with employers will be decided by international law. What will be the status of labour laws, collective agreement and other local laws? Will it be redundant n irrelevant?

Only one topic creates shivers but we have not spoken about other 28 chapters which includes increase of cost for medicines. 

While many consultations have taken place with the Government, all this meetings were not transparent and merely seeking opinions. 

We hope before any decision taken, we urge the Government to discuss with the Malaysian Trades Union Congress and other stake holders to understand and improvise any agreements which are detrimental to workers, citizens and businesses.

Thank you

A.Prem Kumar
General Secretary
Association of Maybank Executives

Saturday, October 3, 2015

MTUC: Workers losing jobs due to automated toll systems

MTUC: Workers losing jobs due to automated toll systems


N Gopal Kishnam urges the government to reverse or restrict the move by highway operators to replace human workers with automated toll booths.

The Malaysian Trades Union Congress (MTUC) is disappointed with the loss of jobs for workers at toll booths, by reason of automation or the electronic toll collection (ETC) system. 

Many local workers, especially women workers, have lost their jobs as a result of this move by highway toll operators. The Malaysian government has failed to protect the employment of workers, when these companies choose to do away with human workers in favor of automation.

Many local workers prefer to be with and stay with their families in their hometowns, especially women workers, and jobs as toll operators at nearby toll booth were a real option for many of these workers, especially those living in smaller towns and rural areas.

In the past, many local workers were willing to migrate to larger towns for work. But due to low wages, the increased cost of living and a poor quality of life, many workers have moved back to their smaller hometowns and rural communities.

Working at toll booths was a real option for many of these workers, and the government should have done what was needed to ensure that these employment opportunities were preserved.

It must also be noted that despite the existence of Smart card and Touch ‘n Go lanes at toll booths, a large number of people still used the cash payment lanes. These cash lanes were also used by taxis and other vehicles that were charged different rates compared to the rates for normal users. Many employers still insist on receipts before reimbursement for travel is paid to workers.

Prepaid cards only benefit one travel card company, Touch ‘n Go. Many low-wage workers, whose regular income is also uncertain due to an unchecked increase in precarious employment in Malaysia and a rise in the loss of regular employment, prefer the ‘pay as you use’ method.

This gives workers real access and control over money in hand. They prefer not to pay in advance money that is effectively stuck and irretrievable in Touch ‘n Go cards.

This preference can also be seen among the many who still avoid regular auto-payment methods, preferring rather to make cash payments when the bill arrives. Likewise, the preference to use prepaid, rather than being obligated to pay higher fixed rates, for their telephony needs – as many a time, they upload small amounts, especially when money is tight.

Only about 4.5 per cent of workers in the private sector in Malaysia are unionised. With the rise in precarious employment practices, including the use of short-term contracts and the use of workers from third parties at the workplace, freedom of association (in unions) is becoming a right that exists but effectively difficult to claim and benefit from, for many workers in Malaysia.

The existing restrictions in law now only allow trade unions, especially national and regional trade unions, for workers ‘within any similar trades, occupations or industries. This is no more practical or just.

The time has come to liberalise these strict requirements, enabling the formation and registration of trade unions of workers in the private sector within particular geographical areas irrespective of what sector, trade or industry they work for. This will also enable workers with employers with a smaller workforce to finally enjoy freedom of association and become members of trade unions.

Currently, national and regional trade unions’ attempts to organise and represent workers in a particular workplace are often defeated by employers, who argue that their employees do not fall within the scope of a particular union. The time may have come to liberalise this in favour of allowing workers the full right of freedom of association. If workers choose a particular union to represent them, that choice must be respected and not be defeated by existing law.

The Malaysian government needs to ensure that employment opportunities are not lost to automation or in other ways, especially where it concerns local workers, more so in town and rural areas.

The MTUC urges the government to reverse or restrict the current move by highway operators to replace human workers in favor of automation.

N Gopal Kishnam is secretary general of the Malaysian Trades Union Congress.

Source: ALIRAN