Monday, November 16, 2009

Unfairly terminated for being pregnant?

Just to quickly follow up on Poultrygeist's post on unfair job termination of pregnant mothers, there're some important points from the accompanying articles to note should any woman find herself in such a position.

(Please revisit Poultrygeist's post to see that you unfortunately have to be eligible for protection under the Employment Act first: be from "a managerial or an executive position who is in receipt of a salary not exceeding $2,500 a month (excluding overtime payments, bonus payments, annual wage supplements, productivity incentive payments and any allowance however described)".)

Advice from Straits Times:
If a woman loses her job while she is pregnant, she can file a complaint with the Labour Relations and Welfare Division of the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) by making an e-appointment through its website or write in to MOM by fax, email or mail. An officer then fixes an interview.

- If she lost her job during the protection period as specified in the law, MOM conducts an inquiry. If the company is not able to show any just cause for the dismissal, it may be asked to reinstate or compensate the employee.

- If the woman was dismissed outside the protection period, she can still complain to MOM, which then conducts a conciliation meeting between employer and employee to help solve the the dispute.

(To lodge a complaint with MOM or for more information, call 6438 5122)

("The New Rules," Straits Times, 8 Nov 2009.)
Labour Relations and Welfare Division, MOM:

Online appointment for Consultation on Employment Act: (you can find this link under MOM > Workplace Relations and Standards > Employment Standards > e-Services and Forms.)

Importantly, please note that to launch a complaint, a termination letter is necessary. Apparently, the deadline to complain with MOM is "within one month of their notification of dismissal".

So starting from the day you are asked to leave, you have one month to get the termination letter (if you haven't received one already) in order to have MOM take up the case with your employer.

If you do not fall under the definition for eligibility, we on the farm advise that you contact MOM immediately and seek their advice anyway.



If you're queasy about going straight to MCYS, or wish for a legal opinion, you may wish to contact AWARE or Law Society of Singapore Pro Bono Services Office.

1800-774-5935 (Mon-Fri, 1500hrs to 2130hrs)
AWARE also runs a free monthly legal clinic that will possibly give you some advice--every second Thursday of the month.

Law Society of Singapore:
6536-0650 (Mon-Fri, 0900hrs to 1745hrs)
There's also a whole list of legal aid clinics that you can find at the Community Legal Clinic.

1 comment:

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