PETALING JAYA: Employers want induction courses for foreign workers to be held in Malaysia rather than to let them be run by trainers in the countries of origin.
Malaysian Employers’ Federation executive director Shamsuddin Bardan said this was because the courses which were supposed to help foreign workers adjust to life here might be run by trainers unfamiliar with the local culture themselves.
“We have raised this issue during a recent meeting with the Human Resources Ministry secretary-general and have appealed to them to review their decision,” he said yesterday.
Shamsuddin was commenting on a statement by Human Resources Minister Datuk Dr S. Subramaniam that the mandatory induction course for maids and foreign workers to qualify for their visas had been put off indefinitely.
The course was to have been made mandatory from May 1 for workers arriving from 10 source countries, among which were Indonesia, Vietnam, Cambodia, the Philippines and Sri Lanka.
Shamsuddin said courses should also be scrapped for those coming in from Indonesia and southern Thailand as many would have been familiar with local customs and language.He said the federation wanted companies themselves to organise induction courses for their foreign workers.
“The companies may already have their own trainers capable of teaching these modules and the courses can be held over the weekends for a period of between one and three months.”
He said although companies were not required to pay directly for the courses if they wanted to employ a foreign workers, the costs of running such programmes would be passed on to them eventually.
“It will result in high employment costs for companies,” he added.
Furthermore, he said such courses would cause a “bottleneck” in their inflow, especially for domestic maids.
He said it was also better for the foreign workers to only undergo the courses when they are already in Malaysia.
“This will make the lessons on language, culture and history more real for them. Induction courses should be meaningful for the workers and cost effective for the employers, and not held just for the sake of it,” he said.