Report your boss, those in non-essential services told if forced to work

The government says companies dealing in non-essential services cannot force their employees to work or go on annual or unpaid leave during the movement control order period. (Bernama pic)

PETALING JAYA: The human resources ministry said employees of a company not listed as an essential service should lodge a police report if they are forced to work while the movement control order (MCO) is in effect.

“Lodge a report at the nearest police station,” the ministry said in a FAQ (frequently asked questions) sheet released today on the MCO announced by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin which is being enforced from March 18 to 31.

It said only those working in essential services need to clock in, although employers must reduce the workforce by half, ensure limited movement, provide sanitisers and screen workers.

The ministry said it is also compulsory for employers to pay their workers in full for this period. The same applies for employees paid on a daily basis, as stipulated in their contract.

Employees can file a complaint with the Labour Department if their bosses refuse to pay them, it said.

However, an investigation into the complaint will be carried out only after the MCO is called off.

The FAQ sheet said an employer should not force its workers to go on annual leave or unpaid leave during the period.

Employers listed under essential services, however, do not have to pay those who refuse to work during the two weeks, although they are still required to pay allowances of staff working from home.

The ministry reminded employers that failure to adhere to the MCO is a criminal offence which can see them slapped with a maximum fine of RM1,000 or six months’ imprisonment or both.

Muhyiddin announced the MCO on Monday to curb the spread of the Covid-19 outbreak, which has already claimed two lives and infected close to a thousand people.

CLICK HERE FOR THE LATEST DATA ON THE COVID-19 SITUATION IN MALAYSIA