Contract employees may get more leave benefits. Tripartite partners target to give more clarity on leave benefits and notice periods for term contract employees.
This would be a step forward in providing clarity and certainty to contractual arrangements. Employees in term contracts are those who are working temporary positions.
According to the MOM, there are some 202,400 such workers, forming 11.3% of the resident workforce.
Presently, only employees on term contracts who have worked with the company for at least 3 months without a break in service, are entitled to annual leave, sick leave, maternity leave, paternity leave, adoption leave, child care and extended childcare leave.
However, some employers work around the system by continually requiring the workers to sign new contracts before a 3 month period. This means a break in service and consequentially, the workers do not enjoy the benefits.
Under the new tripartite guidelines, employers are asked to treat contracts renewed within one month of the previous contract as continuous – and to provide benefits based on the cumulative term of the contracts.
“Term contract employees are as valuable as any other employees. These guidelines help ensure that the interests of these term contract employees are taken care of, that they are fairly treated and are awarded due employment entitlements,” said NTUC Assistant Secretary-General Zainal Sapari.
“Employers are strongly encouraged to adhere to these guidelines. The Labour Movement will work closely with our family of unions, associates, partners, social enterprises and related organisations, to ensure that employment practices are aligned with the guidelines,” he added.
NTUC Assistant Secretary-General Patrick Tay also welcomed the move saying “This is important as many PMEs are these days on ‘contract’ arrangements and can therefore tap on this set of guidelines as a benchmark.”
Details of the guidelines can be found here: http://www.mom.gov.sg/newsroom/press-releases/2016/0620-tripartite-guidelines-developed-for-employers-to-give-greater-clarity-on-leave-benefits-and-notice-period-for-term-contract-employees