Sep. 12, 2017
The Ministry of Employment and Labor (MOEL) will operate "field labor offices" in nine major cities across the country from September 12th (Tue.) to 28th (Thu.) 2017 to gather opinions from the general public in relation to the improvement of labor administration practices and systems.
While the "conversation with labor inspectors" held on August 18th (Fri.) immediately after Employment and Labor Minister Kim Young-joo took office was an opportunity to hear internal staff's opinions to innovate labor administration, the "field labor offices" can be described as a place to hear what improvements the general public, the very customers of labor administration services, want to see in labor administration.
During her inauguration ceremony on August 14th 2017, Minister Kim Young-joo promised that she would create a channel through which to hear the opinions of not only workers and employers but also the general public to provide field-oriented labor administration services. Operating the field labor offices is an attempt to keep that promise.
Each of MOEL's six regional offices and three major district offices (Gyeonggi, Ulsan and Gangwon) has set up a field labor office, a large tent with counters, in a place with high accessibility and heavy foot traffic to receive suggestions from the general public.
The nine "field labor offices" will operate from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. for three weeks from September 12th (Tue.) to 28th (Thu.) including weekends. They may voluntarily extend their office hours beyond 5 p.m.
People will be able to make policy suggestions on key tasks in labor administration, which include innovating labor inspection services, eliminating pay delays, reducing working hours, addressing the issue of non-regular employment, eradicating unfair labor practices and preventing industrial accidents.
The "field labor offices" will not only receive policy suggestions from the general public but will also provide on-site counseling and receive complaints about problems related to people's livelihoods, such as pay delays, as the Chuseok holiday is approaching.
Policy suggestions can also be submitted to customer service centers at MOEL's 47 regional and district offices or through the field labor offices' online channel created on MOEL's website (www.moel.go.kr).
Relevant divisions will consider received suggestions and complaints and directly notify those who have made the suggestions and complaints of the results. Meanwhile, in October MOEL will conduct a comprehensive review of all suggestions and hold a reporting session at which the outcomes of the field labor offices will be presented.
It will also select outstanding suggestions received through the "field labor offices" and give reward money (gift vouchers).
* One million won will be paid to the top excellence award winner, 500,000 won to each of the two excellence award winners and 200,000 won to each of the five encouragement award winners.
So far labor administration has not fully reflected the voice of the general public calling for change and has been tainted with misguided practices. And related public officials, such as labor inspectors, have not always approached people with an open mind.
By breaking the existing mould and enabling ideas suggested by the general public to be reflected in improved labor administration practices and systems, the "field labor offices" are expected to serve as a first step towards innovating labor inspection services and realizing a society where labor is respected.
Employment and Labor Minister Kim Young-joo attended the opening ceremony of the Seoul field labor office held at Seoul Station Square on September 12th (Tue.). She received suggestions from field office visitors and provided counseling to them in person.
Minister Kim stressed, "Labor administration practices and systems should be improved in a way that caters to the people's needs, and such improvements should be made together with the people."
"MOEL will continue to listen carefully to the voices of the general public, workers and businesses and ensure that they are reflected in labor administration during the Moon Jae-in government and beyond so as to fundamentally change Korea's labor administration."
She asked the people to "give many diverse opinions during the operation of the field labor offices so that MOEL can embark on a new path".
The Minister will have visited all of the nine "field labor offices" by September 28th (Thu.), the last day of their operation, to listen directly to the voice of the people.