The Taiwan Ministry of Labor on Monday submitted to the Executive Yuan the first draft of amendments for the controversial five-day-workweek policy, in which the requirement of providing one leave day for every six consecutive workdays is expected to be loosened.
According to the Labor Standards Act, every worker should enjoy two days off per week – one fixed day off, and one flexible, The Liberty Times Net reported.
However, the original law did not advise employers how they should arrange the fixed day off, while the flexible day could be compensated for by asking employees to work for extra pay.
After the inauguration of President Tsai Ing-wen, the government explained that one day off had to be fixed for every six consecutive workdays, which drew heavy criticism from employers.
Amid strong opposition, the Ministry of Labor intends to loosen the policy by allowing a more flexible arrangement of fixed days off. In short, as long as both the employer and the employee agree, a worker would be allowed to work 12 days consecutively and then take two days.
Workers’ representatives slammed the amendment as catering for the interests of the employers, arguing that it was clearly a blow to labor rights as workers could be coerced into overwork.