CAMERON HIGHLANDS: Only 12 out of 1,007 firms in Cameron Highlands that employ foreign workers have applied for the accommodation acknowledgement certificate issued by the Labour Department.
In an inspection, the state Labour Department found that almost all of them had failed to apply for the certificate under the Worker’s Minimum Standard of Housing and Amenities Act 1990.
Its director Muhamad Fauzi Abd Ghani warned that action would be taken against these companies, a majority of which are involved in the agricultural and services sectors, if they failed to adhere to requirements.
On one of their checks at Blue Valley on Sunday, they found a hostel occupied by foreign workers to be filthy and overcrowded, he said.
“From the outside, the hostel looked like it was in good condition. But we found some 80 workers crammed into 24 rooms inside, ” he said, adding that each room is supposed to house only one or two.
“The hostel has poor lighting and broken ceilings. We were informed that the hostel was built without the approval of the local government, ” Muhamad Fauzi said, adding that Health Department officers present during the operation issued a fine to the company for breaching Covid-19 SOP.
“The company set up thermometers and MySejahtera QR codes but the workers do not register themselves or have their temperatures taken. Given the condition of the premises, it could be a potential cluster if someone is infected with Covid-19, ” he said.
Muhamad Fauzi said there were 6,912 registered foreign workers in Cameron Highlands.