Is the Blacklist real?


#101

Actually it seems pretty clear that the criteria for blacklisting teachers is based upon the immigration laws and labor standard laws of Taiwan. Like it or not, I believe that the blacklisting is quite legitimate.

Assuming that the system is not abused, the benefit to schools will be simple. Teachers will still be able to come and go, but in order to avoid blacklisting foreign teachers will need to start giving notice and actually paying the penalties for breach that they agreed to when they took the job. This will mean that schools will know at least one month in advance that they need to find a new teacher, rather than having teachers disappear on them overnight. In cases where teachers do disappear overnight then the school has the right to have the teacher blacklisted.

No one is saying that locals don’t leave jobs suddenly, but the majority of locals most likely give notice for fear that their actions will have an affect upon their chances of securing furture work. Many employers check references for locals whereas they don’t tend to for foreign teachers.

No one would blacklisted for quitting their job and thereby breaking their contract early. People will only get blacklisted if they do a runner. Most people do runners in an attempt to avoid paying the penalties that you refer to. If people give notice and pay the penalty then I seriously doubt that the CLA would entertain any attempts by a school to blacklist a teacher.

I mentioned to the CLA that very few foreign teacher contracts give the teacher the option to actually resign from the contract. Their answer was that under Taiwan law (the Labor Standards Act) any employee can leave his or her employee provided that he or she gives at least one months notice.

You are right. This is not what the blacklist is for, and the CLA have stated that people won’t be blacklisted for breaking contracts, they will only be blacklisted if they break contracts without giving notice. Seems fair to me.

The new list extends the lifetime of the the work permit revocation, making it a permanent situation, rather than a go out and apply for a new visa/work permit/ARC situation.

Good question and one that you might like to follow up with the CLA.

I believe that you are correct in this assumption, and this is basically what the CLA have said. Teachers who give adequate notice will not be blacklisted even if they are breaking their contract early.


#102

Totally disagree with Brian’s sentiment at the end of his post. I think the blacklist is in effect because some interests want to exert control over teachers for their own benefit.

Brian completely sidesteps the ethical issues to try and make it an issue about “good” and “bad” teachers.

I see this more as a power and control issue and a reminder that we have little power here to protect and forward our own interests. This isn’t about fairness. It’s about a powerful lobby group getting rules passed that fulfill their desires. It will only have the effect of being used as a device of control and malicious retribution toward foreign employees.

And I love how we were all consulted about the rule changes and informed when they took effect. Speaks volumes about how we are viewed.


#103

I also disagree with the whole premise. I think it’s ridiculous to link specific employers with legal work privileges. Work permits should be open, or at least category specific, i.e. teachers should be able to apply for any and all buxiban jobs having shown proof of graduation to their nearest Taiwan cconsulate. To be allowed to teach in a university or public school, more stringent qualifications could be demanded. The onus would be on the government to check qualifications, and the the schools would have to concentrate on retaining good teachers.


#104

Anything that puts that much the power in the hands of an employer is hardly fair. People terminate employment contracts all the time and for all kinds of reasons. Often for reasons associated with misconduct on the part of the employer.

Quote - Additionally, the CLA seemed to be very accepting of the need for mediation in cases where a teacher claimed that he or she had been blacklisted without reason. I was told that a decision would be made within 30 days.

I’m not sure what this means. Are you saying that they will make a decision as to whether there will be any access to mediation, or that there will be such access and a decision will be made on that mediation within thirty days?


#105

How about this issue?

You are ordered to leave Taiwan in 14 days. The decsion as to whether your blacklisting was legitimate or not will come in 30 days.

After reading more on the issue my only concern is just how much trouble it is to fight this when there is a problem. I also don’t like the whole “permanent” aspect of it.

Say you’re in a bad situation with a bad school. The school is really shafting you, you decide you’ve had enough and leave. You walk out because the school has been dishonest with you, management is being abusive, and you’re being required to do work that is outside of your contract without pay. And the school plans to take your whole last paycheck if you walk out. So you are paid and you walk.

They’ve violated the contract, they’ve exploited you, and if you stay any longer they’ll just exploit you more. How easily can you prove your case? Should you stay another month after giving notice?

So, your school reports you. You go to get a new job, but when you start trying to get your paperwork in order, you are told you won’t get your work permit unless you appeal and have to leave the country in 14 days and won’t get your work permit.

There are bad schools like that. There are teachers who will be forced to put up with a bad situation or let a school exploit them for a while. And there will be some who will be blacklisted and won’t know what to do about it. They’ll just leave or start working illegally.

Personally, I think that as long as teachers are given the right to stay until 14 days after a decision is made and they would be able to work up until that time this is a non-issue. But unless I’m mistaken you’ll have to leave the country and come back if you want to fight a decision.


#106

I think puiwaihin is right. We saw that Chocolate was deported before his case had been heard, and in a recent case where someone had been fired, it became clear that the authorities had no mechanism in place to halt the deportation process even while the case was in mediation.

I think that if a teacher agrees to a penalty for leaving before the contract is up, the employer would need to offer some kind of substantial compensation in return. For example, if the employee stays on till the end of the contract she gets twice her normal bonus or something. This is how no-competition clauses are supposed to work. You get something in return for having restricted your freedom to stop working for someone when you like.

Again, would a white-collar office worker be unable to get another work permit if he quit without adequate notice. Or what if he quit with notice and the employer just reported him anyway? What if he had a PARC?

Employers have the responsibility to make work attractive enough so that employees don’t want to leave suddenly. English teaching in Taiwan is not paid especially well for the long hours of work and the working conditions. So it’s not surprising that people come and go. But if you look at institutions that pay substantially better than market rates and offer good working conditions, you see people who stay for years.


#107

[quote=“Feiren”]
Again, would a white-collar office worker be unable to get another work permit if he quit without adequate notice. Or what if he quit with notice and the employer just reported him anyway? [/quote]
If he requires a CLA issued work permit, no he couldn’t. Part two, that is what the mediation process is for. Whether it works is another question, that I cannot answer.

PARC and JFRV do not need to get permits for work through the CLA, so no.


#108

PARC holders who are not married DO need work permits issued by the CLA.


#109

That’s the first I’ve heard of them splitting PARC holders into categories of married and non-married. Can you quote a reliable source? Not being argumentative but this makes no sense to me. A PARC holder is a PARC holder, married or not.


#110

Good Point ! A lot of people quit their job because they don’t like it and their employer have no problem to replace them. Why the hell should they give a 1 month notice and let the employer force you to work for them one more month ?

Anyway, I guess that the factory workers will never send their employe a registered letter when they decide to quit, since most of them don’t have a hi-education and don’t know the local law details.

I also don’t understand the reason of the existence of this blacklist. There is already some processes that a company can use against their employes when they just leave their work without notice, regardless of the nationality of the employe. So why this list have been created ?!

And also, why the right to work again should be taken from foreigners and not from locals ??? I would like to see the reactions of the locals if such a blacklisting could apply to them … they will think that it is ridiculous, and will probably humanimly stand against this.


#111

Warning: This is one hell of a long post. :astonished:

What it comes down to in my mind is fairness. I don


#112

[quote=“Feiren”]
Again, would a white-collar office worker be unable to get another work permit if he quit without adequate notice. Or what if he quit with notice and the employer just reported him anyway?[/quote]Skilled foreign employees come under the jurisdiction of the MOEA. It’s been several years since I needed a work permit from them, but at that time about the worst an employer could do to you was to call in and tell them you’d left on the day you quit. That kicks off the process whereby the MOEA has to inform the FAP that you no longer have reason to hold your resident visa, and FAP asks you politely to either apply for a new one, or leave the country within a month. I don’t think that MOEA has any kind of blacklist set up.


#113

The bottom line…

Some employers will abuse their extra power…

Some teachers will take advantage of their rights…

  How would employers get consequenced after faulsly blacklisting someone?  Close down their school and never be able to start another one?

Perhaps if there was a blacklist for school owners, after they treat a teacher poorly, it may be fair. Then…both sides would think twice before rocking the boat.

Permanently losing the right to be a teacher because you quite a job without notice is extreme…a 100,000nt fine would make more sence to me and the government would be cashing in…guess they need a lesson from Canada as to how to get common middle-class to hand over their money via service charges, insurance, and fines. :loco:


#114

For some reason, all this “eternal blacklist here now gone tomorrow he was on it but she wasn’t they told me so but I didn’t get the phone number anyway everybody should be careful because they are definitely watching what you do” is just another shovel of bullshit.

Is this perhaps just another good reason for the western world to hold Taiwan’s feet to the fire when they run around shouting democracy and parity for all? (All of the Taiwanese!)

Likely not since the TW gov’t is well aware of the fact that nobody in Washington or London (and those other places, too)cares about its treatment of Indonesians who daily breathe toxic fumes in the countless shoe factories that abound here. Or, the countless Thais who die in industrial and contrustion accidents each month. Nor do they care about the Filipina maids who are slapped around and abused by their “bosses”. So, why then should anyone outside of us be concerned about some ESL teacher who jumped ship? After all, any English teacher who would commit this egregious effront to a Taiwanese boss is just under the scum of the earth, right? How dare an English teacher tell his LAOBAN :notworthy: to fuck off and die?

I know of no country in the English speaking world where the Taiwanese are blacklisted when they decide to jump ship. It is true that the Taiwanese, especially those lickspittle officeworkers, are only trying to mimic what they “think” (God forbid that they do too much of that!) bureaucrats should do. If they want to copy the western sense of parity and fairness then they should go back to 9th grade civics. Nah, forget it. They should all cave in to Beijing and be good little partyliners.

As a footnote, I wonder if the CLA is equally concerned with all the ghost government employees who only show up on payday? I personally know of two people in the same family “working” for the post office and postal customs who NEVER work, and they are not retired. They only work on payday.

Unless my wife jumps into the fray, I don’t expect to ever be blacklisted. Maybe on her little blacklist she makes from time to time but not on one of the CLA. However my sympathy and rage is on the side of anyone who falls into this abyss of “progressive” Taiwanese mentality.


#115

Brian, I’d take the time to cut and paste all of your post the way you do with others and write a novella length post-- also like you do–but I simply don’t have the time.

You ARE sidestepping ethical issues. Is it ethical and right for specific employers to control your work priviledges in a country? Is it right that, because a job did not work out, one could face a permanent working ban in a country. Employment contracts are broken all the time, and for various reasons. If my employer started hitting children, I’d leave without notice. If my employer abused me in any way, I’d leave without notice. Lovely that the onus would be on me to prove my case in the event of a blacklisting and not the other way around.

The very idea of a blacklist puts way too much power in the hands of a specific group of people at the expense of another. I think you are simplifying the issue–really simplifying it to death-- to try to make it an issue about “good” and “bad” teachers. This is all about power. Period.

You know it’s interesting why I rarely post on Dave’s anymore. The dialogue is controlled by too few individuals, IMO. One of these individuals has a handle that is the name of a famous classical Greek philosopher. This individual believes the sky is falling and issues work advisories for every city and town on the island. The other believes the ROC government can do no wrong. Issues like blacklisting, to this individual, must be the fault of them “bad” teachers, whoever they are.


#116

You know TS, that’s what you always say when there is a discussion being had. You throw your hat into the ring and then the moment someone actually presses the point with you, you state that you don’t have time. Well if you don’t have time to discuss what you say then I would suggest that you don’t enter into a discussion forum in the first place.

BTW, you always go off at me about using the quote function, but forums wouldn’t have it if you shouldn’t use it. Personally, I like it as it makes it very clear which points of the other persons opinion you are discussing.

Anyway, I hope that this will be my last post on this subject. I made my original post to let everyone know about the blacklisting. I certainly don’t believe that the process is perfect but I am yet to see a legitimate reason why it is so terrible. Possible abuse of the system aside.

Is the employer controlling this or is it the government department charged with these affairs, the CLA. From where I sit it looks to me like the CLA are the ones in charge not the schools, and the CLA are a third party so I am not sure that employers have all that much control over us.

And once again I repeat myself - the concept is not that people are blacklisted for breaking contracts. The continuation of this argument is a furphy and may lead to confusion. [color=red]The only people currently blacklisted by the CLA are teachers who skip out on their contract without notice and are absent from work for three or more days.[/color] If you find that a job hasn’t worked out the way that you hoped it would then you do the responsible thing and resign. One month later (or possibly less) you can then be in a perfect job elsewhere. Teachers who resign with notice are not affected by the ban so please stop attempting to argue this line.

You could choose to leave your job for these reasons if you wanted to, but if you left without notice then I expect that you could be blacklisted for this. I would think that on hearing your appeal the CLA would most likely ask - Why didn’t you call the police? Why didn’t you call the CLA?

You could choose to leave your employer for any number of reasons, but they are all due to your choice. Some of the reasons may be somewhat valid but many aren’t. If you want to ensure that you are not blacklisted then you would need to give notice that you are going to leave or face the repercussions of not doing this.

If on the other hand the boss hit you, well then there was a criminal act and upon contacting the CLA you would no doubt find that they would agree that the contract should be invalidated as it can be under Taiwan contract law when illegal activities are involved. You would need to do this in consultation with the CLA though and if you made the decision independantly then you would probably need to try and explain your actions during the appeals process to have your blacklisting lifted.

And then there’s the guy that doesn’t post there very much anymore but was known for sitting on the fence! That’s discussion forums for you I guess - it takes all sorts.


#117

Actually, Brian, I do little fence sitting. My point of view has always been clear and has been illucidated by others at times. I have a pretty assertive online persona. “Fence-sitter” definitely would not describe me.

I certainly hope you don’t think I’m fence sitting on this issue; my viewpoint is crystal clear.

Once again, I ask you to give a clear opinion on this and stop your own fence sitting: Do you feel the CLA is right to be maintaining blacklists? Do you think it is fine and good that we have not been informed of this list’s existence, nor were consulted ahead of its creation?

[quote]The only people currently blacklisted…[/quote] Right. Where are we again? Do you really believe this system–unfair as it already is-- will not be abused? In Taiwan? C’mon.

The examples I listed of why one might leave an employer are just a few possibilities. You missed the point of why I listed them: why is the onus on employee to prove himself innocent after a blacklisting? Nice that they have an appeals process, but shouldn’t such a process occur before any revocation of work rights occurs?

You seem to be, once again, suggesting that this is a good policy, because of those mythical “bad, bad” teachers. I beg to differ.


#118

You should give one months notice because that is what the labor law requires, that is the fair thing to do, and that is the only way to avoid being blacklisted. Just because you give one months notice does not mean that you will need to keep working for a full month. Of course if the school can replace you then you can most likely leave sooner. The idea of the one months notice is to give the employer ample time to arrange a replacement, if this time is required for this to happen.[/quote]

yes, I agree. I wonder why I said that. I think I was thinking to the maid and factory employees :stuck_out_tongue:

What processes are you referring to?[/quote]

Simply sue the employe to have broken the contract.

I think that you are kidding yourself if you don


#119

I have marked my questions in bold so that they are easier to find. Feel free to answer them if you like Toasty.

I see that you are trying to get me to answer in a certain way so that you can slam me for my opinion, but quite honestly I do not feel the way about all of this that you think I do. I am on record for posting my opposition to teachers blacklists, opposition that I have been posting for years. I am also on record for saying that if I was a school owner then I don


#120

I think this could all be relatively simple. What the government SHOULD do is treat all (legal) foreign employees the same as all local employees, with equal access to due process of the law. If there is no “blacklist” such thing for Taiwanese, there shouldn’t be one for foreigners. If there is deportation involved, the foreigner should be allowed to remain in the country until he/her has had their day in court (and follow-up appeals). This is the way foreign residents/workers are treated in the U.S. Foreigners living/working/residing legally in the U.S. are afforded all of the protection under U.S. law that U.S. citizens receive, most importantly DUE PROCESS. This is where Taiwan is light years behind the rest of the civilized world. The government’s left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing, and the legal system doesn’t even know what it’s here for. :unamused:

P.S.- I agree with Feiren that some kind of organization that represents the interests of foreign nationals (legally) working/residing/studying or whatever in Taiwan is a good idea. However, people have been throwing this idea around for a long time and nothing has even come out of it. The problem is that it would take a lot of time and hassle, as we’d need to get government approval, etc. etc. However, as we do have some attorneys here on Forumosa, perhaps they would be willing to get involved, as well as Hartzell and some others.