It was already known that the Labor Affairs Bureau (DSAL) is a throwing weapon by the city’s employer, but agreeing to make the sad figure of invoking Macau’s very recent economic downturn to allow employers to continue to pay the misery of MOP32 (US$3.9) per hour, or MOP256 per day – MOP6,656 per month – to cleaners and security guards is a bit too much.
The position of employers, who try to limit costs and maintain profits, is understood, but a government department that is supposed to advocate for labor and employment and consistently sides – in true collusion – with employers, only shows that this government has long since expired.
It is a pity that DSAL’s political tutors continue to falter and not make it clear that the city belongs to everyone and that those who should be protected first are the least disadvantaged.
The rest of the population, and most of the media, whistle into the air. This, like others, seems like a subject that does not arouse opinions and comments.
It is true that Macau has just gone into economic recession, but it is no less true that the government has full coffers and squanders billions in support of highly profitable private institutions and continues to disburse financial benefits outside the city.
Using this argument to save pennies immediately when it still needs to be proved that the economy is unhealthy, given the healthy state of public accounts, is just one more example of not great leadership.
Good news came out today from the Standing Committee for the Coordination of Social Affairs (CPCS), which proposed several increases to pensions, subsidies and insurance benefits provided in the city. Here, since employers do not have much to lose with the update, they agreed. And so did, naturally, labour representatives.