Huge relief for the less fortunate


  • Metro News
  • Wednesday, 10 Jun 2020

Visually impaired workers at the Wellness Centre at St Nicholas Home lost their income during the MCO period. — Filepic

ASSOCIATIONS for the physically challenged have lauded the Government’s incentive for OKUs as many disabled workers could not find employment or were out of jobs during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Special Children’s Centre Penang (SCC) president Puan Sri Raihanatul Habshiah said the incentive was timely and would be helpful for companies to hire OKUs when they leave the centre.

Under the Penjana programme announced by Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, companies which employ Malaysians under 40 will get RM800 per worker and those 40 years and above or persons with disabilities will get RM1,000 for six months.

Raihanatul said the skills training centre at SCC was closed during the movement control order.

As such, the skilled workers did not get any pay but only benefits from the Welfare Department.

St Nicholas Home general manager David Chiang said the MCO affected the income of the visually impaired who were hired to give body massages at the home’s Wellness Centre.

“We have about six trained visually impaired workers but since the Wellness Centre was closed during the MCO, the workers lost their income.

“The incentive by the Government is a good move as the visually challenged could be hired by companies as they are trained for skilled jobs, ” said Chiang.

Eden Handicap Service Centre founder Bertie Tye said the RM1,000 would go a long way in helping the handicapped who only received welfare benefits if they did not work.

“Companies who hire them can help them with additional income, which will be a big morale booster for the workers, ” he said.

On the e-wallet incentive, working adults find it much easier as they do not have to carry around much cash.

“Making payments with e-wallet makes me worry less about not carrying enough cash, ” said travel reservation advisor Devi Darshini, 26, who added that the cashback promotions were also a plus point.

Receptionist Khadijah Mohamed Mydin, finds it convenient to use the e-wallet especially at fast food restaurants.

“I love fast food and use the e-wallet all the time now, ” she said.

Parents of kindergarten and daycare centre children are glad for the RM3,000 rebate announced as some of them lost their jobs or had to take a pay cut during the MCO.

M. Chandran, 34, said any rebate would be welcomed by parents.

“Many parents have been hit by pay cuts and some even lost their jobs all because of this global pandemic.

“Even I have to take a pay cut as my company is dealing with losses.

“If the rebate could be extended to both parents, then it would be great, but it would be more appropriate if the government could provide a subsidy for the kindergartens and ask them not to impose fees on parents.

“My wife and I had to take care of our children while attending to our work from home during MCO and conditional MCO, ” he said.

Chandran, who works at an advertising firm, said he had to pay his daughters’ daycare fees despite the centre being shut during the MCO and conditional MCO.

“The first month we paid 90% of the fees, then 75% and subsequently 60%, ” he said.

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