Indonesia’s Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Wishnutama is trying to fight for workers in the tourism sector, one of the industries hit hardest by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
He noted that around 1.1 million workers in this industry are eligible to the government’s incentive called a pre-employment card-or kartu pra-kerja.
“I have coordinated with Minister of Manpower Ida Fauziyah regarding the pre-employment program. Also, I am coordinating with other institutions or ministries in distributing other aids,” Rakyat Merdeka reported the minister as saying on Friday (17 April).
The Indonesian government opened the second batch of kartu pra-kerja registration starting from Thursday (16 April) to next Thursday (23 April).
The card provides financial support worth Rp 3,550,000 for online training provided by digital platforms such as Ruangguru, maubelajarapa, Tokopedia, Bukalapak, and Pintaria.
Hospitality workers do not need online training
Indonesia’s Hotel and Restaurant Association (PHRI) stated the pre-employment incentive is not the right solution to laid-off workers in the hospitality sector.
The association said in a statement seen by Antara News on Thursday (16 April) that the hospitality industry has the most certified employees, as it always conducts training courses regularly.
PHRI Chief Hariyadi Sukamdani explained that what the laid-off workers need right now is direct cash aid to survive.
As many as 69,978 workers from 836 hotels and restaurants had registered for the card, Sukamdani said, citing the association’s data.
What about other sectors?
Workers in the creative industry such as film and music are also affected by the pandemic as COVID-19 has forced the cancellation or postponement of all entertainment-related events.
One of such events is the second solo mega-concert by Raisa, one of Indonesia’s leading female singers, which was originally scheduled to be held on 27 June at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in Jakarta.
However, due to concerns surrounding the coronavirus and in line with government directives, the concert has been postponed to 28 November.
Adryanto Pratono, co-founder of Juni Records alongside Raisa, told Detik on Tuesday (14 April) that online training courses may not necessarily apply to all workers in the creative industry.
This is because every worker’s need is different, depending on their specialization and fields, he said.
“Teams like stage, lightning, production have different needs, we cannot generalize,” Adryanto added.
A freelance technician told a TOC correspondent in Jakarta that now he and his family — who are living in Ponorogo, East Java — need direct cash aid more than online training.
He argued that not all types of courses are a one-size-fits-all solution.
“Not everyone understands how to do online learning. In my opinion, cash-funded labour-intensive work is the right solution at the moment.
“I have been in Jakarta for more than 20 years, and now I lost everything due to the COVID-19,” the 43-year-old worker told the correspondent.
COVID-19 has severely hit Indonesia’s hospitality industry, with over 1,000 hotels in Indonesia suspending their operations, leading to the uncertain future of their employees.
As of Friday (17 April), Indonesia has recorded 5,923 COVID-19 cases, with 607 cases in recovery and 520 deaths.