Worker anti-discrimination bill passes

The Legislative Yuan yesterday passed the third reading of a bill that bans discrimination of laborers and job seekers based on age or sexual orientation.

Democratic Progressive Party legislator Huang Shu-ying said that the new law, which still awaits signing by the president, will become an important piece of legislation to protect the rights of laborers and job seekers.

The new law says that employers cannot discriminate against their workers or job seekers based on age, sex, place of birth, sexual orientation, race, language, thought, religion, party affiliation, place of ancestry, marriage status, physical features, physical handicaps, or past labor union membership.

The new labor law also allows employers of runaway foreign domestic caregivers to apply for hiring a new foreign worker after the employer has shown that he or she has reported the case to police and cannot find a Taiwan caregiver.

The employer can only hire a new foreign caregiver six months after they have reported a runaway foreign caregiver to police.

The law will also require foreign labor brokers and the foreign laborer to be responsible for the cost of the laborer’s return trip to his or her home country and any costs of the laborer’s stay in a shelter or detention center in Taiwan.

Before the passage of the law, only the foreign laborer’s employer was responsible for the cost of the laborer’s return trip and stays in detention centers or shelters.

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