Wednesday, March 17, 2010

No pay obligation then No work obligation on National Youth Day!

This is most certainly a CATCH 22! Ok then...if the Ministry of Labour is not obliged to pay their workers for the two days lost to "an act of God"...then it is most certainly FAIR for the workers to take their HOLIDAY on the ALREADY calendared National Youth Day on Monday rather than have to come to work on THEIR HOLIDAY to make up the days LOST! Makes sense right?


Since the disaster is an "act of God" and is also WELL BEYOND your control as a worker, on top of the imposed curfew, you should not be penalised for it by not getting your TRULY DESERVED two days pay! 

Maybe it's time that the ILLEGAL government look into this matter. Maybe a law that covers upto 5 days of paid work due to an "act of God" and then no pay after that period would be sufficient...don't you think? Rather than penalise you for the two days pay and then EXPECT you to go to work on your HOLIDAY!

Fiji’s employers have been informed by the Ministry of Labour that they are not obliged to pay their workers for the two days that they stayed at home this week following a curfew imposed because of Cyclone Tomas.

The ministry’s director of labour and compliance Sadrugu Ramagimagi provided the Fiji Employers Federation with the clarification today, at the Federation’s request.

Ramagimagi told FijiLive that under Fiji’s employment laws, employers are not required to pay in case of natural disasters described as an “act of God”.

“Occurrence of things beyond our control leads to employers not being able to provide employment, eventually resulting in no pay being given out,” he said.

Ramagimagi said the government’s announcement that next Monday’s National Youth Day public holiday would now be a normal working day was sufficient to make up for the days people had lost and therefore workers should not be complaining.

He said it was obvious that people cannot work when there is a natural disaster because they would have to choose between work and their safety.

Ramagimagi agreed that workers would not be happy with the decision but he said this was not the first time such a step has been taken.

“Previously when the nation had stopped working in case of an act by God, no pay was given,” he said.

Ramagimagi added that in normal circumstances, employers had to provide work and pay but not when it was impossible for them to provide work to employees with a curfew imposed.

“There is no obligation to pay unless there are existing contractual agreements to pay,” Ramagimagi said.

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