In pursuit of 'zero irregular jobs in the public sector', the Moon Jae-in government has announced the 'guideline to turn the irregular jobs into the regular employment status' in July this year. However, controversies are growing intensified at the workplaces surrounding the issue. In some cases, permanent and continuing jobs were not included for the target jobs for the regularization or in other cases, even if they were identified as the jobs for the change to the regular employment status, they were often excluded without clear reasons.
|▲ photo by Choi Na-young/The Korea Daily Labor News|
Such voices were raised in a 'testimony rally for the irregular workers in the public sector to abolish the irregular jobs and discrimination' that was jointly organized by Rep. Lee Jung-mi and Rep. Yoon So-ha of the minor opposition Justice Party along with the Korean Federation of General Workers' Unions at a seminar room of the National Assembly on October 11 in Yeouido, Seoul. They vented out their dissatisfaction with the irresponsible attitudes that the local governments and public corporations have shown in addressing the issue,
"I have worked for over 20 years on the verge of job insecurity, but now what I face is no hope to continue my work.", said a 62-year old cleaning service worker in Seocheon Power Plant. In recent, she became jobless when a subcontractor did not renew her one-year employment contract. Seocheon Power Plant closed down permanently in early July this year due to the aging of the coal-fired power plant facilities and restructured the laborforce. When the government announced the guideline on the employment regularization on July 20, irregular workers including her were expected to become regular workers, but ten, most of them were senior workers, out of 23 irregular workers received termination notices from the subcontractor on July 31 and became jobless on the next day.
A local government in Gyeonggi Province, for example, recently called off its plan to regularize the care service workers for the elderly, citing the reason that the service is funded by the central government. According to the government guideline, the service providers whose funds are provided directly by the central government for job creation are not included in principle for the job regularization. However,the guideline recommended 16 businesses including the care service for the elderly to turn the irregular jobs into the regular job status. The final decision is empowered to the job regularization deliberation committee. The wide range of businesses defined as exceptions is ascribed to the low rate of job regularization, showing only 144(15.9%) out of 905 irregular workers turned into the regular job status in this case of the city government.
This case above is considered to be rather positive in comparison, as other local governments and public corporations even do not reveal the information on the irregular forms of employment. "It is therefore important for the central government to carry out the survey and review on the composition, operation and decision of the job regularization deliberation committees to uphold the government policy commitment", a union representative insisted.
reported by Choi Na-young
translated by Kim Sung-jin
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