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Reward for reporting illegal hiring of migrants may be increased

2015/05/20 18:41:45

Taipei, May 20 (CNA) The Ministry of Labor said Wednesday that it is mulling an increase in the cash reward it gives for reporting the illegal hiring of migrant workers while emphasizing that foreign laborers be hired through legal channels.

At present, people who report illegal employers or manpower brokerage firms or foreign laborers on the run through the toll-free hotline 0800-000978 can receive a reward of up to NT$50,000 (US$1,640) per case.

The ministry is contemplating other revisions to the Employment Service Act that will include increasing the fines for such acts as illegally harboring or hiring foreign laborers.

Employers are currently subject to fines of between NT$150,000 and NT$750,000 for illegally hiring migrant workers.

The ministry did not indicate how high the revised reward and fines would go, but it said the drafted revisions will be submitted to the Legislature on July 11 for review.

The ministry's proposals came after a recent incident in which an Indonesian worker stabbed her former employer to death in Hsinchu for allegedly owing her back salary.

The Indonesian worker was found to have come to Taiwan legally to work as a family caregiver, but her employer reported her missing in 2014.

Domestic employers were urged by the ministry on Wednesday to stay away from dealing with illegal brokerage firms or from hiring illegal foreign laborers.

Foreign laborers who have disputes with their employers can seek assistance through the 1955 foreign labor counseling and protection hotline or service centers set up by local governments to counsel migrant workers, the ministry said.

(By Zoe Wei and Lilian Wu)