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Jakarta Post

Workers once again protest against job creation bill

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Tue, August 25, 2020   /   07:19 pm
Workers once again protest against job creation bill Trade unions stage a protest in front of the House of Representatives compound in Senayan, Central Jakarta, on Tuesday. They once again expressed their objection to the omnibus bill on job creation, which is currently in the deliberation stage. (Antara/Aditya Pradana Putra)

Members of the Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (KSPI) have once again gathered in front of the House of Representatives (DPR) compound in Senayan, Central Jakarta, to protest against the omnibus bill on job creation as well as recent mass layoffs amid the economic downturn due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

KSPI president Said Iqbal said the group appreciated the House’s decision to form a team that facilitates communication with workers regarding the contentious articles in the labor cluster of the bill.

“The rally today doesn’t only aim to protest but also to convey support for lawmakers to ensure that workers’ aspirations are heard,” he said in a statement on Tuesday, as quoted by kompas.com.

The KSPI had staged similar protests on July 29 and Aug. 3.

Said went on to say that at least nine concerns lay behind labor unions’ persistent opposition to the draft legislation, chief among them being the elimination of the minimum wage, the reduction of severance packages and exploitative working hours.

Read also: House, unions agree to remove provisions that 'harm workers' from job creation omnibus bill

Furthermore, he claimed that the bill also entailed the elimination of various benefits, such as employee leave rights.

“In addition, a pay raise would be based on economic growth, which contradicts [Government Regulation] No. 78/2005 stipulating that the minimum wage may be raised according to inflation and economic growth,” Said added.

Said suggested that the government and lawmakers expunge the labor cluster from the bill altogether, especially if the two parties wanted to speed up the deliberation.

The Jakarta Police have deployed 5,800 personnel to the House complex and diverted traffic from the vicinity to ensure public order and safety, as reported by tribunnews.com.

Various other labor unions have staged similar protests in several other regions, including Bandung in West Java, Serang in Banten, Semarang in Central Java and Surabaya in East Java, according to Said. (rfa)