Ministry of Manpower Releases Wage and WFH Regulations during PPKM

Jakarta, CNN Indonesia. The Ministry of Manpower (Kemenaker) has issued regulations for working relations during the pandemic COVID-19. Especially in Pemberlakuan Pembatasan Kegiatan Masyarakat (PPKM).

The rules are contained in the Decree of the Minister of Manpower of the Republic of Indonesia (Kepmenaker) Number 104/2021. Concerning Guidelines for Implementing Work Relations During the Corona Virus Disease 2019 (Covid-19) Pandemic.

“This Ministerial Decree is a form of response from the Ministry of Manpower to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on working relations,” said Minister of Manpower Ida Fauziyah, in a written statement Monday (16/8).

According to Ida, the COVID-19 pandemic is a common problem for the government, employers, and workers/labourers. Thus, handling the impact of this pandemic requires the commitment and cooperation of all parties.

“Therefore, in this Kepmenaker we want to emphasize the importance of social dialogue. Because we want all parties to be completely protected from the impact of this pandemic,” said Ida.

WFH and wage regulations during PPKM

The Director General of Industrial Relations and Employment Social Security, Indah Anggoro Putri, said the rules cover 3 things. First, the implementation of the work from home system or Work from Home (WFH) and working in the office/workplace or Work from Office (WFO). Second, the implementation of wages and other workers’ rights.

“In the Minister of Manpower Decree, we convey a reference or guideline for employers and workers. Namely employers who apply the WFH work system and are still required to pay wages,” said Putri.

As for WFO, the percentage of workers who work on a WFO basis must be regulated. As well as arrangements shifting or the division of working time and working days in one month in rotation.

“Working hours are also regulated as well as possible by prioritizing those who are healthy. For pregnant women or those who are prone to illness, they should work from home,” she explained.

If a company is forced to lay off workers due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the rules emphasize that workers/laborers are still entitled to a salary/wages when they are laid off.

“Then companies that are financially unable to pay wages for workers. Employers and workers can make an agreement to adjust wages,” explained Putri.

She added that the calculation of contributions for social security benefits for workers, severance pay, and other rights for workers, which are calculated with wages, must refer to wages before adjustment.

Prevent employment termination

Meanwhile, the third scope regulated in Kepmenaker 104/2021 is the prevention of Termination of Employment (PHK).

The Minister of Manpower stressed that layoffs were the last and only way to be taken if the COVID-19 pandemic had an impact on business continuity.

“But layoffs must be the last resort. If other efforts have been made, then there is no other way, then they are forced to lay off. But it must be a joint decision between employers and workers,” she added.

She noted that if the layoffs were forced to be made due to the company’s financial incompetence, it must be proven by the company’s financial statements that the company is no longer capable.

“In a bipartite dialogue with the decision to lay off, it would involve the local manpower office. And don’t forget that workers’ rights must still be given even though the company is bankrupt,” she concluded.