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April 30, 2017

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Kuan voices support for public sector workers

Retired public sector workers have been trampled on amid the recent debate over their annual year-end bonuses, Examination Yuan President Kuan Chung (關中) said yesterday. They helped lift the nation out of poverty and we cannot deny their contributions, he added.

Benefits of both retired and current public sector workers are approved by the Legislative Yuan, and when budgetary bills are passed by the Legislature, they take on the form of law, Kuan explained, adding that if the benefits are deemed not reasonable, they should be adjusted accordingly by the legislative body.

Kuan stated that the government has been allocating the bonuses for years, including administrations led by the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). Given that the issue has only recently emerged, the ruling party naturally has to assume responsibility, he added.

The head of the Examination Yuan further urged the public not to demonize both current and retired public sector workers.

The recent controversy over public sector workers' benefits has spread to debates on the salaries of administrative officers as well.

Interior Minister Lee Hong-yuan (李鴻源) said yesterday that workers of the public sector possess their own unique value, and that their salaries are determined accordingly.

"All of these issues are open for discussion, but it would be unwise to eliminate this and that sporadically," Lee said. "There should be a comprehensive review first, and then the decision should be made to determine what needs be eliminated, in order to make sure that a balance is struck between what a person earns and what a person does."

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