The Ministry of Human Resources (KSM) is ready to study the proposal to enact a special law related to allowances for industrial or practical training students, to prevent labour exploitation and protect their rights.

Its Minister V. Sivakumar said the existing law, the Employment Act 1955, is sufficient to protect the rights of workers, including students undergoing industrial training.

“I want to explain that the existing law (the Employment Act 1955) is sufficient, but we are ready to study the recommendations of certain parties who want the ministry to review the law, to ensure that the rights of students undergoing industrial training are protected,” he told reporters here today.

He said this after the opening ceremony of the National Human Capital Conference & Exhibition (NHCCE) 2023 - Northern Region, here, which was officiated by Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow.

Sivakumar was commenting on press reports from various parties, including the Student Representative Council of Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia (USIM), urging that the proposal to enact a special law related to industrial training student allowance be expedited to prevent labour exploitation.

The USIM Student Representative Council president Shamsul Aiman Mua'mar Shamsul Bahrain was reported to have said that the issue has been left for too long, and it is time that it be immediately presented to the Cabinet.

Earlier, the media reported that many well-known companies made work placements for practical students without them being paid allowances.

Meanwhile, in another development, Sivakumar said that he had instructed the Department of Manpower (JTK) to ensure that any migrant workers who entered the country had a job, as there were news reports that they were unemployed while they were here.

He said that KSM is very concerned about the issue of migrant workers who come to Malaysia without employment, and there are news reports about them living as squatters.

“I have instructed JTK to ensure that employers who bring in foreign workers to our country have jobs, and at the same time ensure that this does not recur in the future,” he said.

The two-day NHCCE 2023, starting yesterday, is organised by the Human Resource Development Corporation (HRD Corp), in collaboration with the Penang Skills Development Centre (PSDC), with the main focus on the opportunities and challenges faced by industry players in the northern region.

Source: BERNAMA News Agency