Manager charged with abuse of migrant worker

Staff writer, with CNA

Fri, Mar 09, 2018 - Page 3

A Taichung employer was yesterday charged with violating the Human Trafficking Prevention Act (人口販運防制法) for not giving her Indonesian employee time off and proper compensation.

The woman, surnamed Li (李), who manages a factory in Taiping District (太平), hired an Indonesian woman, nicknamed Linda, to work for her starting on Nov. 21, 2016, an indictment from the Taichung District Prosecutors’ Office said.

Li asked Linda to work about 11.5 hours every day from Monday to Friday, eight hours on Saturdays and 8.5 hours on Sundays, the statement said.

While her job entailed packaging at the factory, Linda was also required to go to her employer’s house on weekends to do chores such as laundry, car washing and other housekeeping work.

Li not only violated labor laws by not giving Linda a day off every seven days or paying her for overtime, but she also threatened to beat Linda if she did not comply with the orders, the office said.

Linda called the 1955 24-hour hotline for foreign workers after three months of mistreatment, and the police became involved, it said.

Li has denied the allegations, saying that she never asked Linda to work for more than eight hours at the factory or to work at her house, had given her weekends off and had never hit or threatened to hit her.

However, the investigation found that in the three months that Linda worked for Li, she only had two nights off, prosecutors said.

Furthermore, Linda received just NT$32,752 for the three months, which averages out to a monthly pay that is way below the minimum monthly wage of NT$21,009 that was in place during the time of her employment, they said.

Li owes Linda an estimated NT$50,372 in back pay for work from Nov. 21, 2016, to Feb. 24 last year, prosecutors said.