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Indonesia’s Ministry of Manpower urges employers to avoid layoffs, pay proper wages to WFH staff during PPKM

Indonesia’s Ministry of Manpower urges employers to avoid layoffs, pay proper wages to WFH staff during PPKM

Minister Ida Fauziyah has asked employers, employees, and trade and labour unions to engage in a tripartite level of communication to resolve workplace conflicts caused by PPKM.

As Indonesia undergoes Emergency Community Activity Restrictions (Pemberlakuan Pembatasan Kegiatan Masyarakat, or PPKM), Minister of Manpower, Ida Fauziyah, on Wednesday (7 July), urged employers to not add to the country’s unemployment rate.

"I remind all parties that this PPKM is not to be used to exacerbate or increase employment problems.

“All parties must strive so that, in this situation, there is no termination of employment between employers and workers/labourers," said Minister Fauziyah.

She asked employers, employees, and trade and labour unions to understand the difficult circumstance the country’s currently in, and communicate at a tripartite level to find “concrete solutions” to every working condition before making a business decision.

"Dialogue based on mutual trust and positive thoughts is a powerful way to solve problems," the Minister said.

Further, Minister Fauziyah has asked all parties, especially workers, trade and labour unions, employers, and employers' organisations, as well as local governments to comply with the regulations of PPKM contain the rapid spread of COVID-19.

She requested Indonesian state governors to look at circular letter (SE) number M/9/HK.04/VII/2021—which asks businesses to implement proper health protocols in their workplace and comply with PPKM’s SOPs—and enforce them.

Additional advisory to employers: WFH workers are still entitled to their wages

Any adjustment of wages caused by PPKM must be mutually agreed by the worker and the company, and written as evidence.

While the PPKM is in enforcement in Indonesia between 3 to 20 July, all workers in non-essential sectors must carry out work-from-home (WFH) arrangements. Essential and critical sector workers can work from an office with a limited number of workers.

With this in mind, the Ministry of Manpower said, on Wednesday (7 July), that it’s committed to protecting workers, who are forced to WFH, and their wages during this period.

The Director General of PHI and Social Security Ministry of Manpower, Indah Anggoro Putri, emphasised that during PPKM, workers who WFH are “still entitled to receive wages.”

She reminded the stakeholders that “wages are workers' rights that must be paid by the employer or company.”

“As for the amount of wages, it is based on the agreement in the Work Agreement between the worker and the entrepreneur,” Director General Putri added.

Should the company have difficulty paying wages to workers during PPKM period, the director said, the company should then look at the Circular Letter of the Minister of Manpower Number M/3/HK.04/III/2020—which concerns protecting workers and ensuring business continuity—and abide by the guidelines.

She said: “If there is an adjustment in the amount of wages that will be received by workers as a result of this PPKM, it must be based on written evidence of agreement from the results of bipartite dialogue between workers and companies.”

Image / Indonesia's Ministry of Manpower's Facebook

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