Social security coverage extended to domestic helpers from June, says Saravanan

KUALA LUMPUR: The social security coverage has been extended to benefit 100,000 local and foreign domestic helpers, says Datuk Seri M. Saravanan.

The Human Resources Minister said the Cabinet recently had approved the proposal to extend the social security coverage to domestic helpers under the Employees Social Security Act 1969 (Act 4) and Employment Insurance System Act 2017.

"The government hopes to enforce this expansion through these regulations that is expected to be implemented on June 1," he said during a press conference before the start of the Socso Majlis Iftar 2021 event on Tuesday (April 20).

With the extension, Saravanan said domestic helpers who are Malaysians or are permanent residents who contribute to the Social Security Organisation (Socso) will be protected under the Employment Injury Scheme and the Disability Scheme under Act 4 as well as the Employment Insurance System under Act 800.

For foreign domestic workers, he said they will be protected under Act 4 of the Employment Injury Scheme.

Saravanan said these domestic workers will include those in the informal sectors such as drivers, gardeners, babysitters and others.

He noted that the contribution payment rate by the employer and employee will follow the current contribution rate under Act 4 and Act 800.

"A total of 104,400 domestic helpers comprising 15,000 Malaysians and permanent residents as well as 89,400 foreigners are expected to benefit from this," he said.

Saravanan said the coverage will protect the domestic helpers who previously did not qualify under Act 4 and Act 800.

Separately, Saravanan said that Socso's interest payment has shown an increasing trend every year that was in line with the expanding social safety net and the improvement of benefits.

"Last year, Socso paid an interest amounting to RM4.25bil compared with RM4.2bil in 2019 and RM3.8bil in 2018. This total is an increase from RM3.6bil in 2017 and RM3.3bil in 2016," he said.

In conjunction with the Socso Majlis Iftar 2021 event, Saravanan also delivered interest payments of around RM600,000 to 13 recipients.

The event was also attended by, among others, Socso chief executive officer Datuk Seri Dr Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed.

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