Labor Minister Kuo Fang-yu (郭芳煜) said yesterday that the ministry would investigate more employers in an effort to protect low-wage workers in Taiwan, Apple Daily reported. Kuo said that he is seeking to add another 300 labor inspectors to assist in the ministry’s efforts.
Last year, 49,764 inspections were carried out by the Ministry of Labor, resulting in 8,811 violations. The ministry fined businesses a total NT$310 million.
Representatives for low-wage workers claim that fines do not improve the situation and that such labor violations continue because the fines aren’t enough of an incentive for employers to make amends. The representatives are urging the government to force employers who violate wage laws to increase wages rather than issuing fines.
In Taipei alone, between April 30, 2015 and January 30, 2016, 223 companies were found to have violated labor laws, mostly overtime pay rules that were amended last year.