PETALING JAYA: The Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM) has called for increased protection for undocumented migrant workers to encourage them to come forward for Covid-19 testing to minimise community transmission.
This follows the introduction of the Labour Recalibration Plan which allows construction, manufacturing, plantation and agriculture sectors to legally employ undocumented workers until June 30 next year.
Under the Repatriation Recalibration Plan, which will be in affect over the same period, undocumented immigrants may also volunteer to return home, subject to conditions.
In a statement today, PSM chairman Dr Jeyakumar Devaraj said a one-year moratorium on immigration offences should be granted so migrant workers can come forward for screening.
This, he said, would allay fears of detention and deportation.
He said they should also receive subsidised treatment at government hospitals and given alternative accommodation should they have close contact with positive cases.
“If we are unable to test and isolate those among the migrants who are infected, Covid-19 is going to keep spreading in their community and from there to Malaysians as we share the same space,” he said.
Jeyakumar said the National Security Council and the home affairs ministry should implement these measures to “win the confidence and cooperation of migrant workers” and lower the rate of transmission.
“If not, we are going to be caught in a prolonged partial lockdown that will cause significant economic distress to many,” he added. – FMT