Palace construction staff back on payroll

A group of local construction workers on the Grand Lisboa Palace project have been given their jobs back, local media reports.

The workers re-employment comes after the workers went with legislator Ella Lei Cheng I to the Labor Affairs Bureau (DSAL) last week to submit a letter alleging unfair dismissal.

According to Lei, a total of 100 local construction workers on the project had been dismissed by the construction company without reason, and replaced by non-local workers.

Lei said unreasonable dismissal of the local workers is breach of the government’s promise of hiring local workers as a priority and urged the government to resolve the issue.

According to Macau Business Daily, a meeting took place on Monday between the workers and the construction company, along with the Federation of Trade Unions – with workers demanding the contractor follow the law and prioritize the hiring of locals.

A second meeting took place on Tuesday, with the owner and contractor promising to rehire all affected workers, to resume work immediately, said Lei.

While the workers have now been granted back their jobs, the legislator notes the incident reveals a deeper problem in Macau’s construction labor market and the policies in hiring non-local workers.

Should the government fail to more closely monitor the situation, it would seriously damage the rights of local workers, she added.