Typhoon holiday not applicable for work from home individuals: MOL

The Ministry of Labor announced on Tuesday that those working from home will still be required to work regardless of a possible "typhoon holiday" (颱風假). (Photo courtesy of the Central Weather Bureau)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — As Tropical storm In-fa (烟花) is set to become a moderate typhoon on Tuesday, the Ministry of Labor (MOL, 勞動部) announced that those working from home will still be required to work regardless of a possible “typhoon holiday” (颱風假).

The MOL explained that since Taiwan is still under the level 3 epidemic warning, many are still in WFH (work from home) mode; therefore, there is little risk of danger as there’s no need for commute.

Deputy Director of the Department of Labor Standards and Equal Employment (勞動條件及就業平等) Wang Jing-rong (王金蓉) remarked that there was never a “typhoon holiday” listed under the Labor Standards Act (勞動基準法).

The MOL previously stipulated that if the county or city government announces a “typhoon holiday” at the area or district of a worker’s place of residence or the place where the worker must commute to and from work, the worker may be absent from work, Wang said.

In that instance, the employer may not require the worker to personal leave or special leave for the absence, nor may the employer withhold full-time bonuses, deduct grades, or other unfavorable penalties, Wang added.

She explained that the typhoon holidays were issued in consideration of employees’ safety during their daily commute.

Therefore, as long as there are no personal safety risks, those working from home must continue as usual even if a typhoon holiday is announced.

However, Wang later added that should the employer announce that typhoon leave is also available for those who work from home in order to make the whole company applicable, then that is up to them to decide.