Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Assignment #12

CLA says it is `infeasible' to cover foreign caregivers

Offering coverage under the Labor Standards Act (勞基法) to foreign caregivers in Taiwan is [not going to work] an official of the Council of Labor Affairs (CLA) said on Monday.

The remark came after a protest by several foreign labor human rights groups on Sunday to demand that the government include the 160,000 foreign caregivers working in Taiwan in the labor act.

In response, CLA Deputy Chairwoman Tsao Ai-lan said that unlike foreign factory workers, it is difficult to distinguish a caregivers' working time from their rest time.There would be a lot of disputes if the act were extended to include foreign caregivers, Tsao said.

Tsao also said that foreign caregivers often take care of those who are incapable of moving; so the government cannot require foreign caregivers to take a break after working a certain number of hours.

Meanwhile, she also said that local employers of foreign caregivers should not ask their foreign caregivers to do all of the care work, suggesting the employers to give their foreign employees some days off.

Tsao suggested foreign caregivers negotiate their rights with their employers, noting that if foreign caregivers' rights are infringed upon, they can file a complaint with local labor bureaus.

1. Why does the CLA "suggest" employers give care workers "some days off" rather than make it part of the law?
2. Do you think foreign caregivers should have more labor rights in Taiwan? (they currently have very very little protection)
3. Why are there not more local (Taiwanese) caregivers for elderly people?

For the article, check out:

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