Thursday, 16 July 2020 07:26

Government provides unemployment benefits for private sector layoffs

Sri Lanka’s relief measures including payment of compensation and proposed social security scheme is set to expand unemployment benefits for thousands of private sector employees who lose their jobs due to the COVID-19 contagion.

At least 500,000 private sector employees are faced with the prospect of losing their jobs due to the collapse of Sri Lankan businesses following the coronavirus blow, a senior Labour Ministry official said.

Of this so far about 450,000 tourism-industry workers have lost their jobs in Sri Lanka as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic deepens. The job loss includes 180,000 direct employees with the rest from indirectly-related industries, the official said.

A trade union leader said that another 30,000 have lost their jobs on a general count and added that more will have to face the threat of job losses in the future.

The Labour Department has already proposed the establishment of a comprehensive integrated social security scheme including unemployment benefit scheme linked to re-skilling, re-employment, and up-skilling.

The government has been urged to establish a permanent “Social Protection Fund” on a bill adopted in Parliament, Anton Marcus Joint Secretary Free Trade Zones & General Services Employees Union said..


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