Labor group exposes illegal migrant worker broker

05/10/2021 09:46 PM
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CNA photo May 10, 2021
CNA photo May 10, 2021

Taipei, May 10 (CNA) The Taiwan International Workers' Association (TIWA), a migrant worker protection group, has uncovered a labor broker that continued to collect fees and even fabricated residence permits despite having its business license revoked.

The group said Monday that at least six migrant workers were victimized by Quanta International Manpower Agency, which continued to operate even though the Ministry of Labor (MOL) revoked its license on Nov. 21, 2020, when it failed to renew the license.

Of the six victims, the TIWA said, five have overstayed their visas because the residence permits given to them by the broker were fake.

At a news conference held by the TIWA, a Filipino migrant worker said she was not aware that her resident permit was fake and that she had overstayed her visa until an officer from the National Immigration Agency visited her employer.

According to the TIWA, the broker was fined by the Taipei City government on March 2 for failing to fulfill its duties, causing an employer to break the law.

The TIWA said it was ridiculous for a broker without a business license to be accused of failing to "fulfill its duties" as a licensed migrant worker agency, and it asked the MOL to launch an investigation into the case.

CNA photo May 10, 2021
CNA photo May 10, 2021

The TIWA said the MOL has a duty to inform employers and migrant workers with dealings with brokers if those brokers are engaged in illicit or illegal practices.

The MOL should also streamline the employment process for both migrant workers and employers, while the ministry's employment offices should provide multi-language services for migrant workers, the TIWA suggested.

In response, the MOL said unlicensed labor brokers face fines of between NT$300,000 (US$10,787) to NT$1.5 million, and the fabrication of residence permits for migrant workers violates Taiwan's Criminal Code.

(By Chang Hsiung-feng and Frances Huang)

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