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The Efforts to Enhance the Substantial Functions of the Labor-Management Meeting

       As expressly provided for in the Labor Standards Act (hereinafter referred to as the Act or the Labor Standards Act in full as appropriate in the circumstances), a business unit shall duly hold and sponsor labor-management meetings. As further expressly specified under the Labor Standards Act, three key issues, i.e., flexible working hours, extended working hours and work done by female workers at nighttime shall be subject to approval by the Union or the Labor-Management Meeting. In the recent amendment to the Law(s), the key labor conditions about adjustment of the seven-regular-days-off & one flexible rest-day, the extension of the maximum limit of the working hours within one single month up to 54 hours and curtailment of the interval amidst work shifts should be referred to the Union or Labor-Management Meeting for final decisions to encourage both the labor and the management sides to solve disputes by means of labor-management negotiation. All these issues indicate how important the labor-management meeting is.

How to convene a labor-management meeting?

       As expressly provided for in Article 83 of the Labor Standards Act, a business unit should hold or sponsor a labor-management meeting. Accordingly, the very premises of a business unit to convene a labor-management meeting is the applicability of the Labor Standards Act. To provide a sound governing law over a labor-management meeting, the Ministry of Labor has duly enacted “Regulations for Implementing Labor-Management Meeting” as the governing law for operation and establishment over the labor-management meetings. In terms of the organization of a labor-management meeting, as per Regulations for Implementing Labor-Management Meeting, except a business unit with less than three laborers where both the labor and the management sides shall act as the ipso facto representatives, the labor-management meeting shall be organized by an equal number of representatives from both the labor and the management sides, each side shall have 2 to 15 representatives in the meeting depending on the number of persons in the business unit. However, each side shall have not less than 5 representatives as the business unit has more than 100 persons.

       We’d like to earnestly remind all business units in Taipei City to make use of the “Labor Up-to-date” online system to complete information registration of the representatives of the labor-management meeting within fifteen (15) days after appointment of the labor-management meeting representatives. This Department of Labor will reply with the outcome of the registration directly by means of the system (no longer by means of a paper copy). A business unit may directly look into the details and print out the outcome in a more prompt means directly through the online system.
 
       To encourage all business units to duly convene labor-management meetings according to law, this Department of Labor already launched the Phase I project mechanism in January 2018 by conducting two rounds of preferential audits over those TWSE/GTSM listed companies having hired more than 200 employees and having not yet convened a labor-management meeting. As of August 31, 2018, we, the Department of Labor, had accomplished approximately 87% in the guidance programs. During the May and June period, we further in two-round-efforts, urged the enterprises newly incorporated cleaning January to March period, having hired more than 100~200 employees and having not yet convened a labor-management meeting to set up labor-management meetings. Through all such efforts, we attempt to encourage all business units to set up their labor-management meetings according to law as soon as possible.

       Moreover, we launched Phase II guidance programs during August and October by sponsoring a total of eleven promotional seminars.  For those professional seminars, we screened and retained scholars, experts and lawyers known for their expertise as the expert instructors to lecture the participants, including, notably, Deputy Chairman Chang Chi-Yu of the Occupational Health & Association, Deputy Chairman Wu Hai-Yen of the Association of Labor Relations, R.O.C. and Assistant Manager Chang Che-Hsi of the PricewaterhouseCoopers Legal Taiwan. Toward the business units having not yet set up and having duly convened labor-management meetings, we have duly mapped out varied promotional programs: “How to lawfully set up and convene labor-management meetings and promotional activities” and “cultivation & training programs for the labor part representatives in the labor-management meetings”, with the training curricula focusing on pre-preparation activities for a labor-management meeting, the specifications and hands-on practices in the labor-management meetings as well as the very importance of the labor-management meeting in the Labor Standards Act, which have been duly covered within the educational & training programs. Finally, we teamed up with the scholars and experts and entered into the panel discussions and two-way communications. The educational & training programs have received widespread acclaim and were fully packed, with more than one thousand trainees having participated in the grand events. All trainees responded with enthusiasm, posing very precious questions. Through such significant events, we have been made profoundly aware of the very substantial questions and problems confronting the business units and have become well aware of the cruxes of problems confronting those business units. After completion of the educational & training programs and return to their business units, those trainees have thoroughly achieved and embodied the consensus to boost sound teamwork between both the labor and the management sides, enhance the efficiency of work to, in turn, accomplish the goals of the protection of interests of the labor side. For questions regarding the labor-management meeting, if any, please feel free to contact us through the Labor Relations Division by dialing 1999, through extensions 7013, 7031, 7033.