A Chinese organisation Anpu Electric Science and Technology has come under blast after news emerged that it was fining “lazy” employees who take more than one toilet break per day.
The Chinese company located in Dongguan, Guangdong province, admitted to fining employees $3 for using the toilet more than once a day.
In notices issued by the company and leaked online, at least seven staff members were penalized on December 20 and 21.
Trying to explain why it began using this unusual rule, company officials said management’s decision to create the bizarre rule was because many employees were lazy and used toilet breaks to smoke and avoid their duties.
“We are helpless. The fact is that the workers are lazy at work,” a company manager, surnamed Cao, told Guangdong TV. “The management talked with those workers many times, but didn’t achieve a positive result yet.”
Cao added that the toilet break-limiting rule was deemed a better alternative to firing staff, because finding new workers would have been more difficult.
He also clarified that offenders had not been asked to pay the $3 fines, instead, the money was deducted from their monthly bonuses.
To avoid paying the fine, an employee who desires to take a toilet break more than once a day would have to register with their boss before visiting the restroom.
Mixed reactions trail the company’s policy as some sympathised with the company while some others blasted the company for its decision.
“They are forced to do this,” one person commented on Chinese website 163.com. “Some employees use the toilet for too long and use it frequently. It will no doubt hurt the company’s productivity.”
However, most people blasted Anpu Electric Science and Technology and its management, calling the rule exploitative and humiliating.
“What era is it? The freedom of going to the toilet has become a luxury,” one Weibo user lamented.
Earlier we reported the story of a Beijing-based company identified as Kuaishou that came under fire for monitoring its employees’ time in the toilet by having digital timers hanging over each toilet cubicle and small sensors installed on the cubicle doors to trigger the timers.
Although some argued that the timing will help to increase productivity and profits for the company, others slammed Kuaishou saying the practice is a breach of human rights and privacy. Some on the other hand defended the company, saying that some employees abused bathroom breaks, using it as an opportunity to waste time on their phones.
Following the social media backlash, Kuaishou issued a press release to explain the rationale behind the timers.
The online video-sharing platform claimed that the timers weren’t meant to limit employees’ toilet usage, but rather a solution to a “serious” toilet shortage problem.