Police were called to maintain order at a demonstration by 300 unemployed construction workers which spilled onto the road outside the Labour Affairs Bureau (DSAL) yesterday morning.
One construction worker said that he wanted the bureau to help local residents find a job, urging the DSAL chief to meet him so that he could voice his complaints.
Another said that there were still a lot of industries “suffering from non-resident worker problems”, hoping that the bureau would prioritise local residents and provide an unemployment subsidy.
DSAL Vice Director Chan Un Tong later said that according to the bureau’s records 521 construction workers are out of work after a recent hotel project was completed.
He pointed out that the hotel has already followed the legal procedures to notify the workers and that the bureau went to the construction site where it helped 506 workers look for new job opportunities.
Chan said that the workers are mostly specialised in renovation work, adding that as many of the local construction projects are only just starting some of the workers are having a harder time finding a job. He said that the bureau would help get them a temporary job on other construction sites, find other types of employment or register as unemployed.
According to Chan, the workers outside the bureau yesterday were not there to register as unemployed.
The bureau announced yesterday that it has always prioritised local residents’ employment. The bureau also provided more details about the recently completed hotel construction project, which is located in Cotai. Its contractor gave non-resident workers notice to finish work on 18 January, while local workers continued to work there until early this week.
The bureau underlined that it has always strived to help local construction sector workers find the best jobs available, noting that in the past 12 months it helped 1,043 construction workers get jobs, The Macau Post Daily reported.