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Guarantee sought for annual leave

2014-01-22 08:36 Global Times Web Editor: Li Yan

A member of the Shanghai Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) submitted a proposal Tuesday to force employers to give their employees paid annual leave.

The proposal, which was put forward by Fang Rong, vice secretary of the Shanghai CPPCC, as well as several other CPPCC members, would make paid annual leave a mandatory benefit for workers by 2015.

Although national law gives workers the right to annual leave, many employers have ignored the right because the law doesn't stipulate that the benefit is mandatory, Fang said. Furthermore, the local government has left its goal for completely enforcing the benefit until 2020.

"I think the government should make an effort to ensure that workers can take annual leave by the end of 2015," Fang told the Global Times.

In 1995, China's Labor Law gave annual leave to workers who had worked continuously for more than a year. A 2008 rule further required that employers give five days of paid annual leave to employees who had worked for at least a year.

The law allows employers to postpone an employee's annual leave to the following year or pay him or her for unused days. However, some companies fail to pay their employees for their unused leave. "I have worked for four years, including two years at my current company. My current company never talks about annual leave and does not pay us when we don't take it," an IT company employee surnamed Cao told the Global Times.

Fang said it has become commonplace for some companies and government agencies to simply not schedule annual leave for their staff. "If high officials or bosses do not take annual leave, then their underlings don't dare ask for it," he said.

Fang said that he does not receive annual leave, but would happily take the benefit if it became mandatory.

The members suggested that the local government should issue fines to companies that do not give staff annual leave and establish an online platform to let workers report companies that break the law.

The members also suggested that the government should publish the names of companies that are involved in labor arbitration disputes over annual leave.

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