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Minister: Employers Cannot Force Staff To Quarantine After Interstate Travel

Minister: Employers Cannot Force Staff To Quarantine After Interstate Travel

Kirat Kaur
https://www.therakyatpost.com/2020/03/03/your-boss-cant-force-you-to-take-annual-leave-for-coronavirus-quarantine/

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Senior Minister (Defence) Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob says that employers cannot force their employees to use allocated annual leave, or force them to take unpaid leave, in order to adhere to any 14-day quarantine required by the employer.

Speaking to reporters at the daily Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) briefing today, the Senior Minister said that employers also cannot force workers who’ve recently embarked on interstate travel to undergo 14-days quarantine and consider that as annual leave or unpaid leave.

He says those who have permission from the police to embark on interstate travel do not need to undergo any quarantine, adding that employers who are directing employees to do so are not following the SOP (standard operating procedure) released by the National Security Council (MKN).

Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, Senior Minister (Defence).
(Credit: Facebook/Ismail Sabri Yaakob)

They’re making up their own rules. It is wrong that they’re forcing workers to quarantine for 14 days, and that 14 days are considered unpaid leave. The employer’s actions are wrong.

Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob, Senior Minister (Defence).

Employers can’t force employees to take annual leave

Under Section 60E(1) of the Employment Act 1955, Malaysian workers are entitled to annual paid leaves. The amount of days depends on how long you’ve been working in the company.

Annual leave entitlement as described in the Employment Act 1955.
(Credit: Attorney General’s Chambers Official Portal)

According to the Human Resources Ministry, employers cannot compel employees to take annual leave, as the annual leave is taken at the discretion and at the request of the employee.

Workers who are forced to quarantine by the employer without pay or forced as annual leave can lodge a complaint at the nearest Department of Labour Branch (HERE).

Otherwise, it could be time to set up and register a workplace union to better protect your rights and improve working conditions.


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