HR minister warns employers against docking wages, forcing workers to use annual leave during scheduled water cuts in Penang

BUTTERWORTH, Jan 8 — Employers can be fined up to RM50,000 under the Employment Act 1955 if they dock their workers’ wages or force them to go on annual leave should they opt to shut down operations following the water supply disruption in Penang from January 10 to 14.

Human Resources Minister Steven Sim Chee Keong said employers and employees can refer to the Labour Department if such cases arise for guidance and advice before implementing their policies.

Sim was responding to claims by some workers in the manufacturing sector that they had been asked by their employers to utilise their annual leave during the shutdown of their company’s operations as a result of the water cuts in Penang from January 10 to 14.

He was speaking to reporters after a visit to the office of the Social Security Organisation (Perkeso) in Penang today.

Also present were Perkeso chairman Datuk Seri Subahan Kamal and its chief executive officer Datuk Seri Mohammed Azman Aziz Mohammed.

Separately, Sim said the ministry, through Perkeso will introduce further measures to increase the number of contributors under the Housewives Social Security Scheme (SKSSR) to 500,000 this year.

Currently, the number of contributors to the scheme is only about 200,000 since its introduction at the end of 2022.

“Statistics show that there are about three million women who are full-time housewives in the country, so the current number of 200,000 is very low.

He said the scheme is not restricted to full-time housewives as working women can also contribute to the SKSSR scheme with an annual payment of RM120, which is only RM10 per month, subject to certain terms and conditions. — Bernama



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