Benefits & facilities
Creating a good standard of living and a strong sense of community on the estates is critical to attracting and retaining employees, particularly given the remote location in which we operate. REA encourages employees to bring their families to live on the estates as this improves morale and creates a more balanced community. REA is conscious that living in a remote location can be challenging and encourages all staff to leave the estates on a regular basis by taking long weekends in addition to their annual leave allowance.
Good quality housing and community facilities for employees are a priority, and employees are encouraged to support the group’s ongoing programme of renovation and maintenance with regular awards for best kept homes and village emplacements. The group continues to build houses using “batako” bricks, which are produced in-house by mixing boiler ash from the mills with cement. This material has significantly reduced both the cost and environmental footprint of new houses over the years. Methods of, and materials for, repairs and maintenance must conform to best practices and the group’s sustainability commitments.
The village emplacements are provided with medical clinics, crèches, mosques, churches, sports facilities and markets. In line with recent government regulatory requirements, the group is renovating several buildings and upgrading the equipment in its medical facilities.
Employee cooperative shops (REA Mart), established with the support of the group’s community development department, serve the group’s two northern and one southern estate areas, supplying everyday groceries and household items for the benefit of employees living in estate housing. The shops are able to bulk purchase and thereby source products competitively.
In 2008, the group established an education foundation to manage the network of schools across the estates. These schools are authorised in accordance with government regulations. The foundation manages 27 schools, comprising 13 preschools, 13 primary schools and one secondary school. At the end of 2022, there were 2,685 students (540 preschool, 1,910 primary school and 235 secondary school children) enrolled in the group’s school system. During 2022, the education foundation board was refreshed and is currently exploring possible areas for improvement in the quality of education provision which is critical for attracting and retaining employees. In addition, work on a new secondary school building has commenced to accommodate expanding student requirements and to upgrade the facilities.
Healthcare provision is usually extremely limited in the remote rural areas in Indonesia, such as in the locations of the group’s operations. The group has therefore established a network of 19 clinics to provide healthcare to employees, their family members and members of the local communities living in proximity to the group’s operations. There is a full-time team of three doctors, 19 paramedics, 13 midwives, one dentist and one pharmacist on site. As part of an ongoing programme of progressive investment in upgrading medical services provision and treatment facilities, in 2022 construction commenced on a new medical centre on the group’s estates incorporating in-patient accommodation and expanded treatment facilities. This new facility is planned for commissioning during 2023.
All employees receive training in basic life support skills and staff at certain levels receive training in first aid. Employees are also provided with information on, and training to prevent, the ten most prevalent infectious diseases, such as dengue, haemorrhagic fever and typhoid fever, and female employees receive training in the early detection and prevention of cervical cancer.
Monthly immunisation programmes are provided for families, including against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) as well as polio in collaboration with external medical professionals as part of an Indonesian government programme. In November 2022, the group also participated in the Indonesian government’s Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV) programme for infants up to 12 months.
General and specific work related medical check-ups are also performed for employees, with a range of annual or semi-annual tests that include blood cholinesterase and spirometry or lung saturation tests for potential chemical and dust exposure, audiometry for noise exposure particularly in the mills and fabrication department, and workload endurance, fitness and ergometry for certain field workers, conducted in conjunction with the local Department of Employment. Employees who exhibit unsuitability for the requirements of their role are rotated into other, more suitable, roles. Random drug testing is conducted throughout the year across the group to discourage drug usage and addiction amongst employees and families resident on the group’s estates.
During 2022, the human resources department continued to oversee the implementation of measures to mitigate the risks of Covid in accordance with Indonesian government guidelines and regulations. Working with the group’s medical department, the group maintained appropriate policies and socialisation of health protocols for employees, contractors and visitors to the group’s sites. The group also provided and promoted vaccination through either the Indonesian government programme, for those who are eligible, or a private vaccination programme funded by the group with the aim of securing vaccination (including second doses and boosters) for all employees and families living on the group’s estates. Covid infections among the workforce have been at around 0.03 percent, the majority with no serious symptoms as categorised by the Indonesian health department.
The group has also provided and promoted vaccination through either the Indonesian Government programme, for those who are eligible, or a private vaccination programme funded by the group with the aim of securing vaccination for all employees and families living on the group’s estates. By the end of 2021, all employees and many family members had been offered at least one vaccination, and second and third doses are being administered throughout 2022.
In recognition of the group’s programmes for the prevention and control of Covid in the workplace, Indonesia’s Ministry of Manpower, through the Director General of Manpower Supervision and Occupational Health and Safety, the group was awarded a platinum rating in 2022.