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Laid-off toll collectors still seeking new jobs
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-05-11 05:36 PM
Several hundred toll collectors who were laid off when the Freeway Bureau switched over to electronic billing last year protested outside the Baoqing Road branch of Far Eastern Department Store Sunday, complaining that almost a year later they have not been assigned to new positions as part of the government’s move to dismiss them. The group gathered in warm weather at 3:00pm to hold a press conference and air their gripes about being unable to find suitable work.

The Ministry of Transportation and Communication’s Freeway Bureau has said that it would try to find jobs for all 455 laid-off toll collectors by June 30. On Friday, May 9, Far Eastern Electronic Toll Collection (FETC) held meetings in northern, central and southern Taiwan to offer 295 openings for displaced workers willing to take the jobs.

On Sunday, however, one of the participants in the protest at Far East Department Store said that was the only job-matching session that has been held since December last year, and there are still nearly 300 unemployed former toll collectors who have yet to be placed.

One unnamed official in the Freeway Bureau said that toll collectors were temporary workers who were hired by the government on a yearly basis. The official said toll collectors whose contracts expire or lose their positions for whatever reason are on their own to find new jobs, and the government has no obligation to provide positions for them. Be that as it may, the Freeway Bureau has said that it hopes to act in the best interests of its former employees to avoid any untoward mental effects on the former toll collectors. The bureau said it will do its best to ensure that FETC fulfills any contract obligations it may face including finding new jobs for the displaced toll collectors.

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