The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday criticized the lack of labor policies in President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) inaugural address on Wednesday, while an environmental group called for faster changes to the Mining Act (礦業法).
Tsai has said that she has a soft spot for workers, but she did not mention labor issues in her speech, KMT Culture and Communications Committee chairwoman Alicia Wang (王育敏) said.
Wang accused Tsai of failing to achieve the promises and policies that she presented to workers four years ago.
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
Local workers are facing increasingly tough circumstances, particularly with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Wang said.
The unemployment rate is rising, she said, adding that it reached 3.76 percent in March.
From April 1 to April 27, nearly 15,000 workers were laid off, she added.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
In March, about 261,000 people worked fewer than 35 hours per week due to economic-related reasons — a 15-month high, she said.
Also, the labor insurance fund is expected to go bankrupt in 2028, she said, urging the Tsai administration to take the issue seriously by proposing a feasible solution.
Separately yesterday, Citizen of the Earth and several lawmakers urged a speedy approval of proposed amendments to the Mining Act.
While Tsai said in her speech on Wednesday that she is confident the nation can reach its renewable energy goals, she failed to mention environmental protection, Citizen of the Earth chief executive Lee Ken-cheng (李根政) said.
In her address, Tsai said that she is confident that 20 percent of the nation’s overall power-generating capacity should come from renewable resources by 2025.
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Lin Shu-fen (林淑芬) said that in the prior legislative term, advocacy groups and lawmakers compromised on draft amendments to the act and urged the government to do the same.
An updated version of the proposed amendments includes removing unfair terms, infringements on people’s rights and damage to the environment, she said.
Taiwan People’s Party Legislator Tsai Pi-ru (蔡壁如) said that it is concerning that Tsai’s speech ignored environmental sustainability, Aborigines and transitional justice — topics related to the proposed changes to the act.
DPP Legislator Hung Sun-han (洪申翰) called on government agencies to promptly send their version of the draft amendments to the Legislative Yuan for review.
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