(Updated) Confirmed Salary Hike for Migrant Domestic Workers in Taiwan After 18 Years

(Updated) Confirmed Salary Hike for Migrant Domestic Workers in Taiwan After 18 Years
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What you need to know

220,000 foreign home care workers in Taiwan live on a monthly salary of NT$ 15,840 (approximately US$ 491). Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam have joined together to request the Ministry of Labour to increase the monthly salary to NT$ 17,500 (approximately US$ 543), or they would boycott importing labor through administrative procedures.

Wages for migrant domestic workers are officially increasing after being frozen for 18 years.

220,000 foreign home care workers in Taiwan live on a monthly salary of NT$ 15,840 (approximately US$ 491). Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam have joined together to request the Ministry of Labour to increase the monthly salary or they would boycott importing labor through administrative procedures. The ministry has met with the three countries to draft a program and a salary hike of NT$ 17,000 (approximately US$ 525) will be implemented on September 1. Around 214,000 migrant domestic workers will benefit from the program and approximately 14,000 employers will be affected.

Storm Media reports, the Labor Standards Act doesn’t apply to migrant domestic workers in Taiwan and their salaries have remained NT$ 15,840 (approximately US$ 491) for 18 years.

China Times reports, starting from this July, if employers submit a contract with a salary less than NT$ 17,500 (approximately US$ 543), the contract will be declined or the employers will be interviewed and the verification of the documents will be delayed.

UDN reports, the two negotiation proposals drafted by the ministry are; one, providing the minimum wage of NT$ 20,008 (approximately US$ 620) but deducting lodging and meals costs. Second, adding on to salaries starting from NT$ 15,840 (approximately US$ 491). Officials from the ministry say they are more inclined towards the algorithm of the second case because they are worried the first might lead to arguments concerning whether or not the Labor Standards Act apply to foreign laborers. They also hope to secure a lower salary hike between NT$ 16,840 to NT$ 17,000 (approximately US$ 522 to US$ 527).

As for possible impacts on disadvantaged families, officials say low-income families will be allowed to waive the employment stability fee and can save about NT$1,500 to NT$ 2,000 (approximately US$ 46 to US$ 62) per month.

Apple Daily reports, Wu, who employs a domestic worker to take care of the elderly at home, says the salary hike will put more pressure on his economic situation, but he can only reluctantly accept these circumstances.

Chen Su-xiang, secretary general of the Taiwan International Workers Association, says the salary increase is necessary, and labor groups should advocate for wages equal to the minimum salary to meet the human rights of laborers.

CNA reports, the Ministry of Labour has met with Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam and Taiwan this morning and reached an agreement. Starting from September 1, the monthly salary of migrant domestic workers will be increased to NT$ 17,000 (approximately US$ 525).

Translated by Olivia Yang

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