Over 70% of employers fail to comply with minimum housing standards, says Deputy HR Minister

ALOR SETAR (Bernama): A total of 10,961 or 73.9% of employers were found not complying with the Workers' Minimum Standards of Housing and Amenities Act 1990 (Act 446) during inspections conducted by the Labour Department (JTK) from Feb 1 to April 15.

Deputy Human Resources Minister, Datuk Awang Hashim (pic) said the department has conducted inspections on 14,835 employers nationwide, involving 95,870 employee accommodation units.

"Of the total employers inspected, 3,874 or 26.1% of them met (the criteria), while others still failed to comply with the act. Inspections were also carried out on 616,216 workers, namely, 572,518 foreign workers and 43,698 local workers.

"A total of 625 investigation papers were opened for various offences, including accommodation not certified by the JTK director-general, non-compliance with local authority (PBT) laws and not providing rest and dining areas to employees,” he said to reporters after the Tautan Kasih with Kedah Media event on Saturday (April 17) night.

Awang said accommodation facilities provided by employers should have a safe and conducive environment for every employee, both, locals or foreigners.

"JTK provides guidelines, so we will not tolerate and will prosecute employers who fail to comply with the prescribed act. Thus far, JTK has issued 34 employee transfer orders, 2,417 improvement instructions for accommodation units and 7,885 compliance instructions.

"All employers are expected to abide by the law in order to protect the safety and lives of their employees. This also coincides with the current situation where many positive Covid-19 cases occur among foreign workers due to, among others, lack of good sanitation facilities and accommodation that was not managed properly,” he said. - Bernama

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