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EFC’s HR/IR forum to deliberate on New Unified Labour Law

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The second edition of the Employer Federation of Ceylon’s (EFC) HR/IF Forum for 2019, powered by Unilever Sri Lanka and Glaxosmithkline Sri Lanka will take place on 27 June at the EFC auditorium. The forum will unfold in form of a dialogue with the Commissioner General of Labour, Ananda Wimalaweera on the New Unified Employment Law. 

The proposed unified employment law will integrate multiple labour legislation into a single law. Among these laws are the Wages Boards Ordinance, the Factories Ordinance, Shop and Office Employees Act, Maternity Benefit Ordinance and Employment of Women, Young Persons, and Children Act. Once agreement is reached among all stakeholders concerned, including the Department of Labour, trade union representatives and the EFC, the document is to reach the Bill stage by next year.

The drafted provisions of the proposed law are to be tabled before the National Labour Advisory Committee (NLAC) for deliberations soon. 

Many of the present labour legislation, as the Director General of the EFC, Kanishka Weerasinghe points out are archaic and irrelevant to the modern world of work. “With the emergence of new working trends such as part time work, flexible work, etc., these laws become irrelevant and thereby impact the world of world negatively. Moreover, if we are to keep pace with the global trends, we urgently need to implement labour law reform,” says the EFC Chief who goes on to note that such reforms play a decisive role in sustainable enterprises. 

The proposed unified law, while seeking to raise the minimum age of retirement to 60 in the public sector, is also calling to make an option of a five-day compressed working week for the employees who prefer to take Saturday off. 

The HR/IF Forum will enable the participating employers to have a direct interaction with the Commissioner General of Labour and raise issues concerning them. 

A presentation of the proposed law by the Commissioner General of Labour will also take place followed by an interactive session with the audience.

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