Work from home policy: MOM reveals penalties

Employers can face jail time or fines for failure to implement flexi-work arrangements amid COVID-19

Work from home policy: MOM reveals penalties

The government revealed today (2 April) that employers may face jail time or fines for failure to implement flexible working arrangements during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Employers will be charged under the updated Infectious Diseases Act. If found guilty, companies can be fined not more than $10,000, jailed for a maximum of six months, or both.

According to the updated Act, every company must provide the facilities necessary for every employee to work from home during this period. They must also direct employees to work from home unless it is “not reasonably practicable to do so”.

For those who must go to work, employees must be grouped and must arrive at their place of work at different times. They must not all arrive and leave the workplace at the same time.

The update, first reported by Channel NewsAsia, follows Manpower Minister Josephine Teo’s announcement of a tougher stance on lax employers.

“Employers must allow your employees to work from home, as far as reasonably practicable,” said Teo. “This applies to all workplaces, regardless of size.

“It should be for all times, all days and not sometimes, some days. If the nature of work can allow for work to be done from home, companies should ensure that all their employees work from home.”

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