According to Korean news, the Seoul City government will implement an administrative order requiring foreign workers in Seoul to take the COVID19 test from March 17 to 31. There will be adding capacity to temporary locations at subway stations, parks, and other public areas to accommodate the expected influx of foreign workers who will be forced to take the test. (Source: Foreign Workers in Seoul to take COVID19 test, COVID19 Testing for Foreign Workers in Seoul)
The city government have decided to make the test mandatory and require even illegal workers to get it. Employers and foreign workers of companies with at least one foreign worker MUST undergo the diagnostic test.
For those working in Gyeonggido, the mandatory testing is until March 22. Many foreign workers can only go to the testing venues during the weekend. The officials probably didn’t know this so the testing centers were flooded. In one video I saw posted on Facebook, they went to the testing center on Saturday only to be told to come back the next day. These foreign workers can only rest on a weekend but they had to spend it waiting for hours for the COVID19 test. The government could have planned it better so there would still be social distancing at the testing sites. Looking at the photos and videos on social media will make one wonder if they could catch the virus at the testing location itself.
Meanwhile, foreign workers will have to test negative for COVID19 before they will be hired at businesses in Gyeonggido. The Ministry of Labor and Employment or MOLE will also conduct quarantine inspections at companies with foreign workers and particularly at their living quarters.
When government officials were asked if their policy is discriminatory, they replied that they did the same mandatory testing to Korean members of the churches that had outbreaks last year.