Executive Yuan convenes meeting on work days rule

  • Date: 2016-07-30
  • Source: Department of Information Services, Executive Yuan
<p>20160730 Executive Yuan convenes meeting on work days rule</p>

Premier  Lin  Chuan  convened  an  interministerial  meeting  today  to  discuss  the  “one  day  off  in  every  seven  days”  measure  to  protect  workers’  rights.  Two  resolutions  were  reached  at  the  meeting:

1.  In  accordance  with  administrative  regulations,  the  Ministry  of  Labor  (MOL)  should  draw  up  and  issue  discretion  standards  for  implementing  Article  36  of  the  Labor  Standards  Act,  ensuring  that  workers’  rights  to  have  at  least  one  day  off  in  every  seven  days  are  protected.

2.  When  setting  the  discretion  standards,  the  ministry  should  also  take  into  consideration  public  convenience,  government  policies,  and  workers  in  certain  public  welfare  industries.  Flexibility  should  be  allowed  in  scheduling  consecutive  work  days  to  protect  workers’  physical  and  mental  health.

To  prevent  employers  from  exploiting  a  1986  legal  interpretation  to  overwork  employees  for  many  consecutive  days,  the  MOL  abolished  the  interpretation  letter  on  June  29,  to  take  effect  August  1.  With  the  abolition  of  the  interpretation  letter,  the  law  will  revert  to  the  original  Labor  Standards  Act,  Article  36,  which  only  requires  that  “a  worker  shall  have  at  least  one  regular  day  off  in  every  seven  days.”

However,  since  this  article  does  not  require  any  two  days  off  to  be  separated  by  six  working  days  (or  one  day  off  to  follow  every  six  days  of  work),  it  cannot  guarantee  enforcement  of  the  “one  day  off  in  every  seven  days”  policy.  The  Executive  Yuan  therefore  convened  today’s  meeting  and  instructed  the  MOL  to  come  up  with  a  new  interpretation  on  discretion  standards  within  two  months  to  ensure  that  workers  can  indeed  have  one  day  off  in  every  seven  days  of  work.

To  meet  the  needs  of  public  convenience,  national  policies  and  public  welfare  activities  (such  as  transportation  for  long  public  holidays),  the  labor  ministry  will  consult  with  competent  authorities  on  the  special  needs  of  workers  in  the  tourism  industry  (such  as  tour  guides),  the  media  (journalists  on  overseas  assignments)  and  public  transportation.  The  ministry  is  seeking  to  improve  understanding  and  communications  with  these  industries  and  will  allow  special  considerations  to  ensure  that  the  rights  of  all  workers  are  protected.