Employers favor law change: poll

CABINET AMENDMENT::A yes123 survey of workers and employers found that 71.1 percent of employees said there had been no changes to their work hours this year

By Lee Ya-wen and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Wed, Nov 15, 2017 - Page 3

An overwhelming majority of employers, 83.7 percent, support the Cabinet’s proposed amendments to the “one fixed day off and one rest day” policy, but 45 percent of employees are opposed, a recent poll by yes123 found.

Since amendments to the Labor Standards Act (勞動基準法) took effect on Dec. 23 last year, 71.1 percent of workers who responded to the poll said that there had been no changes to their work hours, while 11 percent said their hours have gone down since the implementation of the policy, the poll found.

Asked if they had received full overtime for working on their rest day, 45.5 percent of workers said “yes,” while 15.8 percent said “no,” the poll found.

Workers were most concerned with whether unused annual leave days could be rolled over to the next year, the poll showed.

Yes123 human resource department deputy director Yang Tsung-pin (楊宗斌) said the poll showed that support and opposition to the proposed amendments were split down the line.

Workers between the ages of 20 and 29 had the highest percentage of opposition to amending the law again, while others backed the amendment as it would offer more opportunities to make money.

Workers who support the proposed amendment said that some business owners either refused to pay overtime, or circumvented the regulations by hiring additional part-time personnel, the poll found.

Business owners were largely supportive of the proposed amendment, as the changes introduced late last year increased their human resource overhead, the poll found, adding that restaurants, malls and hypermarkets were some of the companies most affected by the policy as the majority of their business was conducted on weekends.

One respondent, Yang Chun-yi (楊鈞儀), said he used to work as a cram school teacher, where long working hours reduced the amount of time he could spend with family or friends.

Yang said that after starting his own business, an ice cream parlor, he became even more conscious of the importance of good health, so he is against relaxing regulations mandating that workers be given one off day every seven days.

Long work hours do not usually equal better efficiency, Yang said, adding that it more important that employees are healthy and enjoy their work.

The poll, conducted between Oct. 26 and Monday last week, targeted workers aged 20 and above and employers.

Yes123 received 1,332 valid responses from workers, with a margin of error of 2.69 percentage points and a confidence rate of 95 percent, and 882 valid responses from employers, with a margin of error of 3.3 percentage points and a confidence rate of 95 percent.