Five of the seven national holidays for workers in private sectors remain to be valid this year before a Labor Standards Act amendment bill to cancel the seven national holidays is passed in the Legislature, with the upcoming national holiday being the Teacher’s Day on Sep 28.
All 8.5 million workers in Taiwan are still entitled to the remaining five national holidays before any change is made.
The amendment bill proposes to cancel the seven national holidays for workers in private sectors and adopt the system of two days off per week that contains “one official holiday and one vacation day.” Labor groups have said they don’t exclude taking drastic measure to fight the bill.
The remaining five national holidays for workers are Teachers' Day on Sep 28, Taiwan Retrocession Day on Oct 25, President Chiang Kai-shek's Birthday on Oct 31, Sun Yat-sen's Birthday on Nov 12, and Constitution Day on Dec 25.
According to media reports, even though the Labor Standards Act amendment bill is listed as a priority bill by the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, there are other bills that need more urgent attention in the Legislature. Therefore, the amendment bill might have to wait until the end of November to be voted on, and the possibility that workers will be able to enjoy all the five remaining national holidays is high, reports said.
The Ministry of Labor (MOL) has earlier said that before the amendment bill is passed, companies can decide for themselves whether to take Oct 24 off according to the flexible hours handling to make the Oct 25 holiday, which falls on Tuesday, a four-day vacation.
As Oct 31 falls on Monday, workers will get a three-day vacation. However, as Nov 12 and Dec 25 fall on Saturday and Sunday, respectively, employers are required by law to give workers a compensatory holiday on both occasions. If the compensatory holidays are arranged on Nov 14 and Dec 26, workers will have two more long holidays.
Some netizens said they will have their suitcases ready on Oct 21 and will head for the airport right after work.