Sunday, February 8, 2009

Employee Daily Work Limit?

The other day, when I was told of Markus' sudden death, I was brought to the attention of this piece in the memorial page:
Markus started working with UNICEF in November 2008. He had been working almost non-stop in the past week, sleeping only 3-4 hours a day. He came back from the office at 3am the night before his death and was found dead on his bed the next morning. His computer was still switched on. Obviously he had continued working even after coming home.

After much discussion with doctors, our theory is that his acute stress could have caused some biochemical (electrolyte) imbalance which triggered a cardiac arrythmia (sudden disarray of heart rhythm) and cardiac arrest. The whole thing is at the biochemical level and therefore, there are no organ changes to be detected at post-mortem.
As I said in the previous post, Farewell Markus! I admitted that I came close to the kind of thing that poor Markus had to suffer. The thing of the poor kid was that at the age of 23, he was put to working overtime and without rest. Imagine, from 9 to 3 am in the morning and then coming back to office again at 9 a.m, don't that employee feel that he / she would feel restless if this prolongs for quite some time? Don't you find that working for too long and hard is taking a physical toll on a human being? We have to remember that we are not robots after all.

In Australia and England for example, the government is very concern on the physical and social aspects of an employee. They encourage employees to have more time with their families. In America, they do not. That is why in those countries, they have stricter labor laws whereby a private company must stop at no later than 5 or 6 p.m, regardless of the status of work.

That is why the average amount of medical leave for employees working in Europe is just one day every year compare to 4 at the rest of the world.

There are actually a few variations of this particular labor law as there are number of sectors to consider off, for example, in government, those working in essential sectors like hospitals or those working at portsides, there are separate clauses and exceptions.

Malaysia should start introducing that labor law. It may affect business or something, but this episode in which a poor kid never had a proper rest and resulted in his death is the responsibility of the organization that brought him in. That is beyond proportions.

So let's get the ball rolling, and hey, Subramaniam, the HR minister - start proposing the law. Where is the worker welfare? What about you MTUC? Actually, at this time, there should be a daily work limit for an employee. If minimum of 40 per week is there, than maybe it's changing to the range of 40-45 hours. Anything more, and it is either leave compensation or overtime pay. Period.


No comments:

Post a Comment

You are welcome to post in any comments that do not trouble readers of the blog.

Providing an ID is recommended. If some reason you wish to use an Anonymous name, please leave a name below your comments. From now on, comments with no names will not be considered for moderation.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...