Photo by : Kusuma Wijaya / Sawitfest 2021
Palmoilmagazine, JAKARTA – Palm oil plantation labors may be working at exploitative condition, getting cheap salary, vulnerable work status, having minimally work and health safety. These happen for years without any change.
Palm oil Labor Coalition urged the government should realize these as one significant condition to be solved by publishing supportive policies. But the facts showed, the government published Undang-Undang Cipta kerja that vanishes work certainty status, salary status, social and health protection guarantee.
“UU Cipta kerja will not protect the labors. The company could fire every labor anytime by saying that the company gets loss by giving small numbers of cash (as regulated in UU Cipta kerja). It never fulfills what the labors’ need on their rights,” Palm oil Labor Coalition emphasized as in the official statement to Palmoilmagazine.
Palm oil Labor Coalition also mentioned, the Constitutional Court in its sentence declared that Regulation Number 11 / 2020 about Cipta kerja is formally defective and unconstitutional. The Constitutional Court urged the government to suspend every policy/action which could be strategic, widely impacting and should not publish new derivative regulations that have something to do with UU Cipta kerja. But what the Constitutional Court sentenced is not running in the field. Some palm oil plantation companies took derivative regulations of UU Cipta kerja to respond what the labors demanded. Of course, these are the loss for the labors. Instead of fulfilling to vanish UU Cipta kerja, Legislation Board of Indonesian Legislators would revise Regulation Number 12 / 2011 about the Procedures to Establish Regulation as the follow up of what Constitutional Court sentenced which is, Regulation Number 11 / 2o20 about Cipta kerja is against to constitution. This showed that the government really ignores the people.
That is why Palm oil Labor Coalition urged, the government should pay attention to the labors as the spears in palm oil industries in Indonesia, namely the female which is the group that gets loss the most and marginalized. The coalition also urged, every regulation should be improved namely about labor protection, work certainty, salary certainty, worth salary, social and health guarantee, mechanism of health and work safety, and protection to get free union.
About holiday allowance, Palm oil Labor Coalition urged, the government should confirm that every labor in palm oil plantation gets holiday allowance without differentiating his work status. The coalition got information and complain from plantation labors in Central Kalimantan, Bengkulu, Central Sulawesi, Aceh, and North Kalimantan, that many labors do not get allowance as the regulation. In Aceh and Central Sulawesi, many labors do not get it. In Central Kalimantan, palm oil plantation companies just gave parcels to freelancers as the substitution of holiday allowance.
“In palm oil plantations in Bengkulu, many freelancers do not get allowance for they work in plasma plantations. The government should evaluate and deliver sanctions to the companies which do not give allowance or just gave parcels as the allowance substitution. The government should not only establish posts of complaint but should directly see the fields to confirm that the labors get their rights (holiday allowance,” the coalition noted.
The expensive palm cooking oil and other food needs that burden the people who get low income, cannot be solved by the government. Many expensive goods will not be the same with the increasing labors’ salary in palm oil sectors. This is the new burden for the labors. The government itself has no big design to guarantee that the daily needs would not be expensive namely palm cooking oil. When the government decided the highest retail price, palm cooking oil was rare to be bought but it was easily found in the markets when the government revoked the highest retail price.
“As a country within its status to have the widest palm oil plantations, and the main palm oil producer in the world, the rare and expensive palm cooking oil delivers big question, of course. The country should actually has sovereignty to manage palm oil industries,” Palm oil Labor Coalition said. (T2)