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Work-permit backlog caused by hack addressed

Work permit

The Department of Immigration has worked through a backlog of work-permit applications that built up after a cyberattack on government systems in September.

In addition to the challenges presented by the attack, the department said that it had to repeatedly contact employers over contracts that offered less than minimum wage.

A statement from the department said: “Despite the DOI team being unable to access the systems required to validate essential information, they continued manually processing work permits as much as possible.

“During this period, it became abundantly clear that the team spent a significant amount of time vetting applications and engaging in frequent dialogue with employers because employment contracts or statements of employment did not include the new minimum hourly wage of $16.40.

“The Employment (Minimum Hourly Wage) Order 2023, which took effect on June 1, affects all workers, including persons employed in hospitality, domestic and similar job categories.”

The statement said that in addition to salaries, employers must indicate the hourly wage in all employment contracts and statements of employment.

“Employers will also recall the advisory to submit updated, amended employment contracts for current work-permit holders and for work-permit applications approved before June 1, or currently being processed and yet to be issued by July 30,” the department said.

“Work-permit holders must have updated and amended employment contracts or statements of employment to avoid automatic refusal when submitting new and renewal work-permit applications, even if including the new minimum hourly wage rate in the latest applications.

“Employers are encouraged to meet these requirements to avoid the automatic refusal of applications.”

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Published December 06, 2023 at 7:51 am (Updated December 06, 2023 at 7:51 am)

Work-permit backlog caused by hack addressed

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