MOM Seeks to Make Changes With the Employment Act
The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) is looking to revise the Employment Act from its last review in 2012. To do this, the MOM is seeking public feedback on various areas to ensure the act’s relevance and to enhance its coverage. The Act’s last amendment was in 2015.
Among the areas, the ministry expects feedback relates to entitlements for public holidays and sick leave, salary payment, allowable deductions and redress for wrongful dismissal. The MOM is looking into the possibility of extending these privileges to all employees. These provisions cover all employees except managers and executives earning more than S$4,500 monthly and domestic workers, public servants and seafarers.
Apart from that, views are also welcome with regards to possible revisions to the salary thresholds. Such amendments apply to non-workmen earning monthly salaries of up to S$2,500 and S$4,500, respectively. Such worker classes are more vulnerable. Aside from the core provisions, they also receive additional protection relative to time-based provisions. These include annual leave, hours of work, overtime pay and rest days.
Under the Employment Act, “non-workmen” are employees with white-collar occupations, such as clerks and retail assistants. Employees doing manual labour, such as labourers and machine operators are what classifies as “workmen”.
Streamlining the Dispute Resolution Process
The MOM is also inviting views from the public on streamlining the dispute resolution process for both employers and employees.
The Employment Claims Tribunals hears all statutory and contractual salary-related disputes, while wrongful dismissal claims are heard by the MOM.
If the dismissal-related claim arises due to salary issues, both parties must resolve the issue, avoiding strain on the employee.
The public can view the areas of the proposed review on the REACH website, from Jan 18 to Feb 15, and provide feedback by emailing [email protected] with the subject heading “Consultation on EA review”.